Laryngotracheal reconstruction in the adult: A ten year experience

Charles F. Lano, James A. Duncavage, Lou Reinisch, Robert H. Ossoff, Mark S. Courey, James L. Netterville

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study is to retrospectively analyze our experience with airway reconstruction, to outline a new staging system for laryngotracheal (LT) stenosis, and to identify preoperatively those patients likely to fail reconstruction. We reviewed 41 patients who underwent 46 LT reconstructions over the past 10 years. Success was judged by the ability to decannulate patients within 1 year postoperatively. Of our patients, 63% were treated successfully, and an additional 17% had intermediate success. The techniques used for laryngotracheoplasty with augmentation grafting and tracheal resection are reviewed. Major complications, thoracic complications, and wound complications are presented. Each patient was staged by the McCaffrey staging system and Cotton grades. We propose a new staging system based on the extent of the stenosis throughout the glottis, subglottis, and trachea. It is logical and easy to use. Applied to our cases of LT stenosis retrospectively, the new system predicts clinical success (χ2, p = .05). Using contingency tables and χ2 testing for statistical evaluation, we found that diabetics have a significantly higher failure rate (χ2, p = .0002). Further, we identified a group of patients who in addition to the airway stenosis also had comorbid medical conditions that frequently necessitate a tracheostomy. These patients have a significantly higher failure rate (χ2, p = .009). Using this information and applying the staging system prior to reconstruction, we can identify patients likely to fail.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-97
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1998


  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Larynx
  • Reconstruction
  • Staging
  • Stenosis
  • Subglottis
  • Trachea


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