Research

Paediatric gastrointestinal endoscopy: Experience in Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa

C B Eke, R A Brown, R J de Lacy, E A Goddard

Abstract


Background. Endoscopy is an important diagnostic and therapeutic mode of management in children with gastrointestinal disorders.

Objective. To determine the indications, endoscopic yields and impact of the service on the ongoing health and complications among children who underwent gastrointestinal endoscopy at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town.

Methods. A 10-year (2007 - 2016) retrospective study of children <18 years old who underwent gastrointestinal endoscopy was undertaken using relevant patients’ variables obtained from their hospital medical records. Data were analysed using Stata 13.1 (p<0.05).

Results. A total of 402 children underwent a total of 695 gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures: 592 (85.2%) were gastroscopies, 78 (11.2%) combined gastroscopies with colonoscopies and 25 (3.6%) colonoscopy-only procedures, respectively. The main diagnostic indications for gastroscopy, gastroscopy combined with colonoscopy and colonoscopy-only were chronic abdominal pain (n=49; 12.2%), suspected inflammatory bowel disease (n=30; 7.5%) and rectal bleeding (n=13; 52.0%) respectively. The most common therapeutic indication for gastroscopy was change of a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (n=143; 35.6%) while for colonoscopy 6 (5.8%) had polypectomy. Abnormal histopathological results were made from both macroscopically normal- and abnormal-looking tissues, though with no statistically significant relationship.

Conclusion. Endoscopy offers diagnostic and therapeutic options in children. Positive histological findings were obtained in some cases where gastrointestinal mucosae appeared normal. There is need to obtain biopsies from both macroscopically normal- and abnormallooking gastrointestinal mucosae as positive histological findings could be made from them and hence improve diagnostic yield.


Authors' affiliations

C B Eke, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, South Africa; 2 Division of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa; Department of Paediatrics, College of medicine, University of Nigeria, Enugu, Nigeria

R A Brown, Department of Paediatric Surgery, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa

R J de Lacy, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, South Africa; Division of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa

E A Goddard, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, South Africa; Division of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa

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Cite this article

South African Journal of Child Health 2022;16(2):63.

Article History

Date submitted: 2022-07-22
Date published: 2022-07-22

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