Use of Magnets as a Minimally Invasive Approach for Anastomosis in Esophageal Atresia: Long-Term Outcomes.

Slater BJ, Borobia P, Lovvorn HN, Raees MA, Bass KD, Almond S, Hoover JD, Kumar T, Zaritzky M
J Laparoendosc Adv Surg Tech A. 2019 29 (10): 1202-1206

PMID: 31524560 · DOI:10.1089/lap.2019.0199

The majority of esophageal atresia (EA) patients undergo surgical repair soon after birth. However, factors due to patient characteristics, esophageal length, or surgical complications can limit the ability to obtain esophageal continuity. A number of techniques have been described to treat these patients with "long-gap" EA. Magnets are a nonsurgical alternative for esophageal anastomosis. The purpose of this study was to report long-term outcomes for the use of magnets in EA. Between July 2001 and December 2017, 13 patients underwent placement of a magnetic catheter-based system under fluoroscopic guidance at six institutions. Daily chest radiographs were obtained until there was union of the magnets. Magnets were then removed and replaced with an oro- or nasogastric tube. Complications and outcomes were recorded. The average length of follow-up was 9.3 years (range 1.42-17.75). A total of 85% of the patients had type A, pure EA, and 15% had type C with previous fistula ligation. The average length of time to achieve anastomosis was 6.3 days (range 3-13). No anastomotic leaks occurred, and all of the patients had an expected esophageal stenosis that required dilation given the 10F coupling surface of the magnets (average 9.8, range 3-22). Six patients (46%) had retrievable esophageal stents, and two underwent surgery; yet all maintained their native esophagus without interposition. A total of 92% were on full oral feeds at the time of follow-up. The use of magnets for treatment of long-gap EA is safe and feasible and accomplished good long-term outcomes. The main complication was esophageal stricture, although all patients maintained their native esophagus. A prospective observational study is currently enrolling patients to evaluate the safety and benefit of a catheter-based magnetic device for EA.

MeSH Terms (14)

Dilatation Esophageal Atresia Esophageal Stenosis Female Fluoroscopy Follow-Up Studies Humans Infant Magnets Male Radiography, Interventional Retrospective Studies Stents Treatment Outcome

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