Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Pediatr Surg. 1997 Nov;32(11):1643-4.

Diaphragmatic eventration in infants and children: is conservative treatment justified?

Author information

Department of Surgery, Kobe Children's Hospital, Japan.



The purpose of this study is to examine the justification of diaphragmatic plication to treat diaphragmatic eventration. A retrospective review of 50 patients who underwent diaphragmatic plication for phrenic nerve injury (PNI) or congenital muscular deficiency (CMD) of the diaphragm was conducted.


During the last 26 years, 50 patients, aged 4 days to 7 years, were surgically treated for diaphragmatic eventration. Twenty-five patients had iatrogenic PNI and another 25 had CMD. Respiratory distress developed in all patients who had PNI and 10 required mechanical ventilatory support for 13 to 78 days (mean, 41 days) before operation. Respiratory symptoms developed in 17 of 25 patients who had CMD, and four required ventilatory support. In those who were asymptomatic, we justified surgical repair to optimize future lung growth. All patients underwent diaphragmatic plication by a thoracic approach. Reefing mattress sutures on pledgets were used for the plication.


In patients who had PNI, ventilatory support could be discontinued within 0 to 6 days (mean, 3 days) after operation, with a dramatic improvement in their respiratory status. Two patients required reoperation because the plication was not tight enough. Seven patients died in this series, but none because of the diaphragmatic plication.


This study suggests that symptomatic patients who have diaphragmatic eventration should be operated on immediately with an expected dramatic resolution of their respiratory problems.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center