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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Pneumothorax in pediatric patients after urological laparoscopic surgery: experience with 4 patients.

PURPOSE: Pneumothorax is a rare but known complication of adult urological laparoscopic surgery and has been described occasionally in children as well. The etiologies for pneumothorax during such procedures are discussed as is the management of pneumothorax in this setting. We investigate the occurrence of pneumothorax during laparoscopic pediatric urological procedures in children. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Pneumothorax developed during urological laparoscopic procedures in 4 pediatric patients (3 females, 1 male). Patient age ranged from 8 months to 11 years (mean 5.4 years). Laparoscopic surgical procedures performed included right upper pole partial nephrectomy, left upper pole partial nephroureterectomy, removal of left multicystic dysplastic kidney and bilateral Cohen reimplantation of ureters. Procedures were performed with a maximum insufflation pressure of 15 mm Hg. During the same time period as these four cases, a total of 285 laparoscopic urologic procedures were performed at our institution. RESULTS: Pneumothorax was suspected due to decreased oxygen saturations, subcutaneous emphysema, increased respiratory effort and decreased chest lung sounds unilaterally. Pneumothorax was confirmed with chest x-rays. Operative time ranged from 171 to 249 minutes (mean 199.5). Duration of surgery before pneumothorax developed ranged from 75 to 239 minutes (mean 176, median 168). Conservative management of pneumothorax was used in 3 patients and a pigtail chest tube was used in 1. In all cases the estimated blood loss was minimal. CONCLUSIONS: Urologists performing laparoscopy in children should be aware of the possibility of a pneumothorax developing during the procedure. Evaluation for decrease in O2 saturation should include a search for pneumothorax in these patients. Close observation generally suffices for management.[1]


  1. Pneumothorax in pediatric patients after urological laparoscopic surgery: experience with 4 patients. Waterman, B.J., Robinson, B.C., Snow, B.W., Cartwright, P.C., Hamilton, B.D., Grasso, M. J. Urol. (2004) [Pubmed]
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