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August 1992

Hirschsprung's Disease: Evaluation of Mortality and Long-term Function in 260 Cases

Author Affiliations

From the Section of Pediatric Surgery, Department of Surgery, Indiana University School of Medicine, and the J. W. Riley Hospital for Children, Indianapolis, Ind.

Arch Surg. 1992;127(8):934-942. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1992.01420080068011

• This report describes 260 patients treated for Hirschsprung's disease. There were 213 boys (82%) and 47 girls (18%). Age at diagnosis was younger than 30 days in 106 patients (41 %), 1 month to 1 year in 90 patients (35%), and older than 1 year in 64 patients (25%). Diagnosis was achieved with barium enema and rectal biopsy. Aganglionosis involved the rectum or rectosigmoid in 174 patients (67%), the left colon in 38 patients (15%), and the proximal colon in 23 patients (9%); 25 patients (9%) had total colonic aganglionosis. Enterocolitis occurred in 47 cases (18%). Following an initial colostomy or ileostomy, a definitive pull-through procedure was performed in 247 patients (95%) (modified Duhamel in 185, Soave in25, Swenson procedure in 15, and anomyectomy/sphincterotomy in 22); the overall survival rate was 93.8% (244 of 260 patients). An increased mortality was associated with Down syndrome, total colonic aganglionosis, and enterocolitis. Long-term follow-up (mean, 6 years 10 months) was available in 103 patients who underwent a Duhamel procedure. Sixty-seven (65%) had normal bowel function, 28 (27%) occasionally used enemas or stool softeners, and eight (8%) had severe constipation or soiling. Bowel habits improved with time and were considered normal in 58% of patients at less than 5 years of follow-up and in 88% of patients at more than 15 years of follow-up. The Duhamel operation is a very effective definitive procedure for Hirschsprung's disease. Long-term follow-up is an important component of patient care.

(Arch Surg. 1992;127:934-942)

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