Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a well-recognized consequence of congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH). Results of studies examining predictive factors for early and late GERD are inconclusive. The aim of this study was to assess the incidence of early (<2 years) and late GERD (≥6 years) following CDH repair and to identify predictive variables.Patients and Methods:
Of 183 patients born with high-risk CDH, 107 survived and 38 were excluded. Perinatal and postnatal data of 69 eligible patients were analysed to identify variables predictive for early GERD. For the follow-up study, 58 patients (84%) (ages 12.1 ± 3.4 years; range 6–17) completed a standardised questionnaire. Results were compared with those from a healthy control group (n = 83). Patients who had a score indicating increased risk of GERD underwent further diagnostic assessment. Predictive factors for early and late GERD were identified using multivariate regression analysis.Results:
Early GERD was demonstrated in 27 patients (39%). Patch closure and intrathoracic position of the stomach were independent predictive variables for early GERD. At the time of follow-up, 9 of 58 patients (16%) had symptoms suggestive of GERD. In 7 patients (12%), late GERD was confirmed. For late GERD, however, no perinatal or postnatal risk factors were identified.Conclusions:
Early GERD is more common in CDH patients with patch closure or intrathoracic position of the stomach. Predictive factors for late GERD could not be identified and screening for early GERD does not protect for future GERD; therefore, long-term follow-up for GERD in CDH survivors is mandatory.