Descending Aortopexy and Posterior Tracheopexy for Severe Tracheomalacia and Left Mainstem Bronchomalacia

Hester F. Shieh, C. Jason Smithers, Thomas E. Hamilton, David Zurakowski, Gary A. Visner, Michael A. Manfredi, Russell W. Jennings, Christopher W. Baird

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Posterior descending aortopexy can relieve posterior intrusion of the left mainstem bronchus that may limit the effectiveness of posterior tracheobronchopexy. We review outcomes of patients undergoing both descending aortopexy and posterior tracheopexy for severe tracheobronchomalacia with posterior intrusion and left mainstem compression to determine if there were resolution of clinical symptoms and bronchoscopic evidence of improvement in airway collapse. All patients who underwent both descending aortopexy and posterior tracheopexy from October 2012 to October 2016 were retrospectively reviewed. Clinical symptoms, tracheomalacia scores based on standardized dynamic airway evaluation by anatomical region, and persistent airway intrusion requiring reoperation were collected. Data were analyzed by Wald and Wilcoxon signed-rank tests. Thirty-two patients underwent descending aortopexy and posterior tracheopexy at median age of 18 months (interquartile range 6-40 months). Median follow-up was 3 months (interquartile range 1-7 months). There were statistically significant improvements in clinical symptoms postoperatively, including cough, noisy breathing, prolonged and recurrent respiratory infections, ventilator dependence, blue spells, and brief resolved unexplained events (all P < 0.001), as well as exercise intolerance (P = 0.033), transient respiratory distress requiring positive pressure (P = 0.003), and oxygen dependence (P = 0.007). Total tracheomalacia scores improved significantly (P < 0.001), with significant segmental improvements in the middle (P = 0.003) and lower (P < 0.001) trachea, and right (P = 0.011) and left (P < 0.001) mainstem bronchi. Two patients (6%) had persistent airway intrusion requiring reoperation with anterior aortopexy or tracheopexy. Descending aortopexy and posterior tracheopexy are effective in treating severe tracheobronchomalacia and left mainstem intrusion with significant improvements in clinical symptoms and degree of airway collapse on bronchoscopy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)479-485
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in thoracic and cardiovascular surgery
Volume31
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aortopexy
  • Bronchomalacia
  • Descending aortopexy
  • Posterior tracheopexy
  • Tracheomalacia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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