Just two days after the birth, joyful parental moments since the arrival of their baby were replaced by the agony that the newborn must undergo a serious surgery. 48 hours after the birth, an infant born at “Acibadem Sistina” Hospital was diagnosed with a rare type of esophageal anomaly. A condition found in one in 3.000 children in the world was detected exactly in this newborn. It was a case of absence of continuity in the esophagus, an urgent condition that had to be promptly resolved by surgical intervention since it was life-threatening as well. Doctors found that the baby’s saliva practically was coming out because of the indications that the upper esophageal segment ended blindly while the lower segment communicated to the trachea. In normal cases, the esophagus continues into the stomach. Our hero was operated and he is already at home in good general condition.

Dr. Stanka Tancheva-Krstevska, a pediatrician, speaks about the case passionately. She is happy that immediately after the intervention, the infant started to feed by mouth.

“The baby was born in the 35th week of gestation, weighing 2.180 grams. Shortly after the birth, congenital anomaly – a type of atresia that can not be diagnosed during pregnancy – was found. Sometimes it is difficult to diagnose it even after the birth since the babies do not consume large amounts of food in the first few days of life. We observed the anomaly very early and immediately performed an esophagogram. The image detected an interruption in the esophagus. The condition was urgent and it had to be resolved immediately so as not to cause major complications. Serious intervention in the field of neonatal surgery was performed. The intervention ended well, and now the baby is under surveillance; post-operative monitoring at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is necessary. We are happy that after the intervention, the baby began to feed by mouth”, says Dr. Tancheva-Krstevska.

This complex intervention was performed for the first time at “Acibadem Sistina” Hospital by Dr. Risto Simeonov, a pediatric surgeon. He says the surgery lasted for several hours.

“This type of anomaly is diagnosed after the birth, when the infant is not able to spit the saliva down and it comes out through the mouth. A second characteristic sign that signals a problem is the impossibility to insert a nasogastric probe into the stomach, as the esophageal interruption makes a resistance. Professor Zoran Trajkovski, MD, Ph.D, performed an esophagogram with contrast by mouth, indicating that the upper segment ends blindly, that is, the contrast does not go down. After obtaining the results, we planned a surgery that was performed on the second day of the birth. The prompter the surgical intervention is done, the chance for further success is greater. If the intervention is not done there is a risk for the baby to swallows the saliva; it can reach the trachea and leads to dysfunction in the lungs due to fluid discharge. Then the condition gets complicated, and besides the existing esophageal problem additional complications arise, which in premature baby of two kilograms could end up fatally”, adds Dr. Simeonov.

Following the successfully performed intervention, the baby was admitted at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and after a few days it was discharged and went home. Doctors expect a normal growth and development, without any problems. Like any other infant, this baby will also have a normal diet and will function normally.