Original Article

Laryngeal cleft—case series from a surgical neonatal intensive care unit

Christine Jorgensen, Amit Trivedi, Alan Cheng, Jonathan De Lima, Karen Walker


Background: Laryngeal clefts are rare congenital anomalies of the upper aerodigestive tract with a persistent connection between the posterior laryngotracheal airway and the oesophagus. The purpose of this study was to review the clinical presentation, management and outcomes of a cohort of infants presenting with laryngeal clefts to a tertiary surgical neonatal intensive care unit in the newborn period.
Methods: A single centre retrospective case review was conducted on infants with a diagnosis of types I to IV laryngeal cleft.
Results: Eight infants with laryngeal clefts were identified. The median age at presentation was 1.5 days (1–118 days) and median age to diagnosis was 6.5 days. Seven out of eight neonates were male and five were born prematurely. Seven out of eight had a significant comorbidity and four infants died.
Conclusions: Patients with laryngeal clefts in this study had a high morbidity and mortality despite various forms of surgical intervention.

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