Recurrent tracheoesophageal fistula after thoracoscopic repair: vanishing clips as a potential sign

Pediatr Surg Int. 2011 Dec;27(12):1357-9. doi: 10.1007/s00383-011-2902-8. Epub 2011 Apr 24.


We present a case of a neonate who underwent surgery for esophageal atresia (EA) with tracheoesophageal fistula (TEF) with an unusual finding on postoperative chest radiographs. In retrospect, this was a clue to a recurrent TEF: disappearance of the surgical clips from the site of surgical repair. Knowledge of this radiographic finding could aid in the diagnosis of a recurrent fistula in patients with previous repair of EA.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Bronchoscopy / methods
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Esophageal Atresia / surgery*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Radiography, Thoracic
  • Recurrence
  • Suture Techniques / instrumentation*
  • Thoracoscopy / adverse effects*
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula / diagnosis
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula / etiology*
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula / surgery