Endoscopic Vacuum-assisted Closure With Sponge for Esophagotracheal Fistula After Esophagectomy

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We experienced a case of endoscopic vacuum-assisted closure with sponge for esophagotracheal fistula diagnosed after esophagectomy due to squamous cell esophageal cancer. The patient, who had undergone a robotic-assisted thoracoscopic esophagectomy and esophageal reconstruction of the stomach, was referred for the management of esophagotracheal fistula. Diagnostic esophagogastroduodenoscopy and imaging studies were performed, and they indicated anastomotic leakage with esophagotracheal fistula. The patient was treated by the endoscopic placement of full-covered self-expanding metal stents, but the fistula persisted. Then, we applied a size-adjusted sponge endoscopically with continuous suction by a vacuum system in the fistula lesion. Complete closure was achieved without any procedure-related complications. After 40 days, symptomatic esophageal stricture was detected and treated successfully with endoscopic balloon dilation. Endoscopic vacuum-assisted closure with a sponge might be an adequate alternative treatment option for esophageal stenting for esophagotracheal fistula after esophagectomy.

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