DG Journal Club
METHODS A chart review of all general anesthetics occurring between 2011-2017 at a single pediatric hospital was performed. Children with trisomy 21 were identified. Matched controls were created using a 1:1 propensity score and controlling for patient sex, patient age, surgical specialty, airway management, and anesthetic induction technique. The primary outcomes were the numbers of difficult intubations and perioperative respiratory adverse events. Secondary outcomes included the number of intubation attempts and the Cormack-Lehane grade in each cohort.
RESULTS/DATA ANALYSIS A total of 2,702 anesthetic records were reviewed. Propensity score matching resulted in adequately matched control groups as indicated by a standard mean difference below 0.2 in each case. Logistic regression analysis between trisomy 21 patients and matched controls demonstrated that the trisomy 21 cohort had a higher incidence of perioperative respiratory adverse events (OR 2.04, 95% CI 1.34 – 3.09, p=0.0008) due largely to a higher incidence of airway obstruction (1.7% vs. 0.2%, p=0.0005). The trisomy 21 group had a lower rate of difficult intubation (OR 0.26, 95% CI 0.07 – 0.91, p=0.034). There was no association between trisomy 21 and the number of intubation attempts (RR 0.99, 95% CI 0.88 – 1.13, p = 0.92) or Cormack-Lehane grade (RR 0.95, 95% CI 0.87 – 1.05, p = 0.35).
CONCLUSIONS Compared to matched controls, children with trisomy 21 have a lower incidence of difficult intubation and a higher incidence of perioperative respiratory adverse events, largely due to increased rate of airway obstruction.