BACKGROUND: Anastomotic stricture (AS) is the most frequently occurring complication that occurs after esophageal atresia (EA) repair. Nevertheless, the pathogenesis remains primarily unknown and there is inadequate knowledge regarding the risk factors for AS. Therefore, a systematic review of the literature and a meta-analysis was performed to investigate whether gender and birth weight were risk factors for the development of AS following EA repair.
METHODS: The main outcome measure was the occurrence of AS. Forest plots with odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were generated for the outcomes. Quality assessment was performed using the Newcastle-Ottawa scale.
RESULTS: Six studies with a total of 495 patients were included; 59% males, and 37 and 63% of the patients weighed < 2500 g and ≥ 2500 g, respectively. Male gender (OR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.66-1.40; p = 0.82) and birth weight < 2500 g (OR, 0.74; 95% CI, 0.47-1.15; p = 0.18) did not increase the risk of AS. The majority of the included studies were retrospective cohort studies and the overall risk of bias was considered to be low to moderate.
CONCLUSION: Neither gender nor birth weight appear to have an impact on the risk of AS development following EA repair.