An Unexpected Cause of Chronic Dysphonia in a 10-year-old Boy

American Family Children's Hospital, Madison, WI, USA.
Journal of Pediatric Health Care (Impact Factor: 1.44). 09/2009; 23(5):327-32. DOI: 10.1016/j.pedhc.2009.03.008
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Dysphonia is common in children, but practice varies considerably regarding what, if any, investigations are performed and how the condition is managed. Although childhood dysphonia is mostly due to non-serious causes such as voice misuse, very serious pathology such as papillomatosis or malignancy needs occasionally to be excluded, and treatable congenital anomalies such as webs and cysts can be missed. Voice clinics and voice therapy services are now well established in most adult health services in the developed world, but equivalent services for children are less common, at least in the UK. We retrospectively reviewed the records of all children presenting to our large children's hospital with a primary complaint of dysphonia between January 2001 and October 2007, in order to determine their management, investigations and final diagnosis. We identified 142 children. Case records were found for 137 (97 per cent). Eight-three children were male (61 per cent) and 54 female (39 per cent). Ages ranged from two months to 15 years (median 5.3 years). In 10 children (7 per cent), hoarseness was congenital, presenting as a hoarse, weak cry at birth. In 15 children (11 per cent), onset of hoarseness was related to a specific surgical procedure. The larynx was visualised by mirror alone in 23 children (17 per cent), by awake fibre-optic laryngoscopy in 27 (20 per cent) and by microlaryngoscopy-bronchoscopy under anaesthesia in 42 (31 per cent). Forty children (29 per cent) did not undergo laryngeal visualisation at any time and were diagnosed based on history alone. A further five (4 per cent) were scheduled for direct laryngoscopy but this was not performed due to resolution of symptoms. Voice abuse accounted for 62 (45 per cent) of all diagnoses. Childhood dysphonia accounts for a large number of referrals. There is considerable variation in how these children are managed. A more structured approach to diagnosis and investigation would be beneficial, perhaps within the setting of a dedicated paediatric voice clinic.
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    ABSTRACT: Sildenafil (Viagra, Pfizer) is being increasingly used to treat pulmonary hypertension in children. However, there are limited data available to suggest dosage regimens. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of escalating doses of sildenafil on hemodynamics and gas exchange in children with pulmonary hypertension because of congenital cardiac defects. Prospective, observational study. Pediatric intensive care unit in a tertiary care children's hospital. Ten children with pulmonary hypertension because of congenital cardiac defects who were in the intensive care unit and on nitric oxide after cardiac surgery. Patients received sildenafil every 4 hours via a gastric tube in incremental doses of 0.5 mg/kg, 1 mg/kg, 1.5 mg/kg, and 2.0 mg/kg along with nitric oxide during their stay in the intensive care unit until they were extubated. Hemodynamic and arterial blood gas measurements were taken before (baseline) and 60 minutes after the administration of sildenafil. All doses of sildenafil caused significant reduction in pulmonary artery pressure with no significant effect on systemic arterial and central venous pressures. Arterial partial pressure of oxygen was decreased after a 2.0 mg/kg dose of sildenafil but not significantly. No significant differences were found among the 4 doses. For the treatment of pulmonary hypertension in children with congenital cardiac defects, a 0.5 mg/kg dose of sildenafil every 4 hours is therapeutically as effective as a 2.0 mg/kg dose every 4 hours. However, a large dose-ranging and pharmacokinetic study of sildenafil in children with pulmonary hypertension because of congenital cardiac defects is needed to validate the safety and efficacy of the dose-range and dosing interval suggested by this study.
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