Etiology of Stridor in Infants

Abstract

Objectives: We undertook to identify data that facilitate determination of an accurate diagnosis of the cause of stridor in infants and to develop a framework to conceptualize the problem. Methods: We reviewed medical records of patients less than 1 year of age with the presenting symptom of stridor who were initially evaluated in the outpatient setting of a tertiary children’s hospital. Infants with obvious congenital syn-dromes, cerebral palsy, or hypotonia were excluded. All infants underwent history-taking, physical examination, and when symptoms were mild, office flexible laryngoscopy. With moderate or severe stridor, a more complete endoscopic evaluation was undertaken in the operating room. Results: Of 202 patients, 119 (59%) were boys and 83 (41%) were girls. Their ages ranged from 3 days to 11 months; 175 (87%) were 6 months of age or younger. Congenital anomalies were diagnosed as the cause of stridor in 170 (84%). Congenital laryngeal anomalies caused stridor in 157 (78%); congenital tracheal abnormalities were the cause in 13 (6%). The most common congenital laryngeal anomaly was laryngomalacia (94%). Forty-two (21%) of the 202 patients had at least 1 other anomaly that contributed to airway compromise. Half of all patients had laryngopharyngeal reflux, the most common associated condition. Of patients referred with a presumptive diagnosis by non-otolaryngologists, 28 of 94 (30%) were referred with erroneous presumptive diagnoses for which they were being treated, the most common of which was tracheomalacia. Conclusions: A standard, rational approach to the evaluation of stridor in infants facilitates management. A framework for evaluation is presented

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oai:CiteSeerX.psu:10.1.1.896.429Last time updated on 10/31/2017

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