Minimally invasive repairs of pediatric diaphragm eventration have been well described via a thoracoscopic approach, oftentimes requiring single-lung ventilation and tube thoracostomy, with the disadvantage of not being able to clearly visualize what lies beneath the diaphragm. We describe a novel pediatric diaphragm eventration repair using a laparoscopic transperitoneal approach and an endostapler device. We also describe our initial experience with this technique.
Patients and Methods
Four pediatric diaphragmatic eventration patients underwent laparoscopic transperitoneal repair using an endostapler device. Repairs were performed in both male and female patients with right-sided eventrations. We approach the repair in a transperitoneal fashion using inverting sutures at the apex of the diaphragm to create tension toward the pelvis. Subsequently, an endostapler is used to remove the redundant portion of diaphragm, leaving a repaired, taut diaphragm.
The median age at operation was 10.5 months. The median operative time was 70 minutes. There was no mortality, surgical complications, or recurrence at a median follow-up of 17 months.
This laparoscopic approach allows for clear visualization of the intraabdominal organs and, at least in our early experience, a very simple, straightforward operation. Additionally, with the use of the endostapler, the redundant, often weakened diaphragm is removed, leaving the native, healthy diaphragm behind, resulting in a reliable and reproducible repair. This repair should be considered as a feasible alternative approach to the more traditional open and thoracoscopic repairs.