Mid- and long-term effects on pulmonary perfusion, anatomy and diaphragmatic motility in survivors of congenital diaphragmatic hernia

Pediatr Surg Int. 2005 Dec;21(12):954-9. doi: 10.1007/s00383-005-1557-8. Epub 2005 Oct 21.


The aim of the present study was to evaluate the pulmonary sequelae and diaphragmatic motility in infant, adolescent and adult patients (pts) who had undergone the repair of a congenital diaphragmatic hernia. Thirty-one (81.5%) out of 38 survivors after left side CDH repair, without using a patch, were followed-up. They were subdivided in two groups. Group A (mid-term follow-up): 12 pts (39%) (5 males, 7 females) with a mean age of 4.5 years; Group B (long-term follow-up): 19 pts (61%) (9 males, 10 females) with a mean age of 21.0 years. All pts underwent physical examination, chest X-ray, diaphragmatic ultrasonographic (US) examination, pulmonary perfusion scintigraphy. Patients of the group B were also submitted to spirometry. All pts had a normal life-style and no one complained of respiratory symptoms. The chest X-ray revealed pathologic findings in 12 pts (39%). 8 pts (26%) showed chest wall alterations. The profile of the left diaphragmatic dome appeared irregular in 9 pts (29%). In all pts M-mode sonography disclosed a reduced diaphragmatic motility on the treated side. The mean pulmonary perfusion scintigraphy value on the affected side was 39.2+/-0.7%. The spirometric study showed normal values. We noted that the lung perfusion significantly and rapidly improved after CDH repair even the apparently hypoplastic and small lungs, the diaphragm maintained a good contractility during forced respiration.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Diagnostic Imaging
  • Diaphragm / pathology
  • Diaphragm / physiopathology*
  • Hernia, Diaphragmatic / pathology
  • Hernia, Diaphragmatic / physiopathology*
  • Hernia, Diaphragmatic / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lung / pathology
  • Lung / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Perfusion
  • Spirometry
  • Survivors