|LETTERS TO EDITOR
|Year : 2020 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 162-163
Surgical emphysema leading to respiratory distress following partial cricotracheal resection for subglottic stenosis in a paediatric patient
Deepak Dwivedi1, Vikas Gupta2, Gunjan Dwivedi2, Shalendra Singh1
1 Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care, Armed Forces Medical College, Command Hospital (Southern Command), Pune, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of ENT, Armed Forces Medical College, Command Hospital (Southern Command), Pune, Maharashtra, India
|Date of Submission||23-Feb-2020|
|Date of Acceptance||25-Mar-2020|
|Date of Web Publication||19-Sep-2020|
Dr. Deepak Dwivedi
Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care, Armed Forces Medical College, Command Hospital (Southern Command), Pune - 411 040, Maharashtra
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
|How to cite this article:|
Dwivedi D, Gupta V, Dwivedi G, Singh S. Surgical emphysema leading to respiratory distress following partial cricotracheal resection for subglottic stenosis in a paediatric patient. Indian Anaesth Forum 2020;21:162-3
|How to cite this URL:|
Dwivedi D, Gupta V, Dwivedi G, Singh S. Surgical emphysema leading to respiratory distress following partial cricotracheal resection for subglottic stenosis in a paediatric patient. Indian Anaesth Forum [serial online] 2020 [cited 2023 Jun 7];21:162-3. Available from: http://www.theiaforum.org/text.asp?2020/21/2/162/295322
Acquired subglottic stenosis (SGS) with the incidence between 1% and 8% follows the consequences of prolonged intubation. Other risk factors include gastro-oesophageal reflux, repeated intubations, low birth weight (<1500 g). The SGS is graded according to the Cotton Meyer Classification. The treatment options offered for higher Grades (III and IV) are amenable to partial cricotracheal resection (PCTR) or laryngotracheal resection with posterior cricoid split with grafting., We present a life-threatening airway emergency following PCTR surgery in a paediatric patient.
A 5-year-old male child weighing 14 kg, an operated case of ventricular septal defect, transposition of the great arteries with acquired sub glottic stenosis (Grade IV) following prolonged intubation, with tracheostomy tube in situ presented to this hospital. Child was evaluated by head and neck onco-surgeons and non-contrast-enhanced computed tomography neck confirmed the narrowing from the level of arytenoids and caudally for a length of 7 mm. Child underwent single stage PCTR with primary thyrotracheal anastomosis under general anaesthesia. He was shifted to paediatric intensive care unit (PICU) on mechanical ventilation (pressure control mode) with sedation protocol of PICU. Patient was extubated on seventh postoperative day (POD) once fibreoptic laryngoscopy (FOL) (size 2.4 mm pentax) confirmed the integrity of anastomosis.
On 16th POD the child had a brief bout of cough, following which he developed difficulty in breathing with desaturation (SpO2 between 82% and 84% with oxygen supplementation). Examination revealed. Surgical emphysema at the incision site in the neck between the sternocleidomastoids laterally, hyoid superiorly and suprasternal notch inferiorly.
In wake of dehiscence of the anastomotic line, the patient was shifted to operation theatre (OT) and was orally intubated. The tracheostomy trolley with ear, nose and throat surgeons was standby. Child was ventilated with increased ventilatory rate and tidal volume of 4–5 ml/kg to prevent the loss of tidal volume in the subcutaneous tissue as there was an evident pericuff leak as cuff volume could not be increased to prevent damage to the healing posterior wall of the anastomosis [Figure 1].
Re-exploration revealed anastomotic leak of 1 cm × 1 cm in the anterior tracheal wall, which was re-anastomosed with intact posterior tracheal wall. Child was shifted to PICU on ventilator. On eighth POD a check FOL revealed a well healing anastomosis with minimal mucosal oedema. Successful extubation was done and oxygen supplementation with adrenaline nebulization (1:1000 3–5 ml) was followed by steroid nebulization.
Complications following PCTR can be classified as anastomotic or nonanastomotic. Anastomotic complications as quoted by Bibas et al. include, re-stenosis in 16% patients and about 4.6% patients developed anastomotic dehiscence requiring re-exploration. Yamamoto et al. did analysis of the data base on their 129 paediatric patients following PCTR and found anastomotic dehiscence in 10% of the patients. Development of well localized surgical emphysema consequent to anastomotic dehiscence following PCTR surgery perhaps, was due to walling off by the healing neck tissues. In our case the ventilatory failure resulted as the proportion of the child's tidal volume was lost through the dehiscence site into subcutaneous tissue. Therefore, vigilant monitoring and timely intervention resulted in an effective airway management.
Declaration of patient consent
The authors certify that they have obtained all appropriate patient consent forms. In the form the patient(s) has/have given his/her/their consent for his/her/their images and other clinical information to be reported in the journal. The patients understand that their names and initials will not be published and due efforts will be made to conceal their identity, but anonymity cannot be guaranteed.
Financial support and sponsorship
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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