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Revista Colombiana de Gastroenterologia

Print version ISSN 0120-9957


GOMEZ ZULETA, Martín Alonso; RUIZ MORALES, Óscar Fernando  and  RIVEROS, Javier. Diagnostic Usefulness of Upper Gastrointestinal Endoscopy for Patients under 18 Years of Age. Rev Col Gastroenterol [online]. 2014, vol.29, n.2, pp.112-116. ISSN 0120-9957.

Objective: The objective of this study was to define the diagnostic value of upper gastrointestinal endoscopy for patients under 18 years of age. Materials and Methods: This was a retrospective cross-sectional study based on findings from upper gastrointestinal endoscopy and resulting histopathology reports. These reports were found in the database of the endoscopy department at a third level medical center of referral in Bogotá, Colombia. Procedures were performs between January 2007 and January 2013. The study population consisted of 113 patients between the ages of five and seventeen years of age for whom all available information regarding age, gender and endoscopic and histopathological diagnoses was collected. Results: A total of 113 records of patients between 5 and 18 years old were found for the evaluation period between January 2007 and December 2012. Sixty one percent (n = 69) of these patients were female. 16.8% (n = 19) of the patients were under 12 years of age for which reason they required sedation administered by an anesthesiologist. The most common indications for endoscopy were abdominal pain (36 %, n = 40) and gastrointestinal bleeding (19 %, n = 22). The most common endoscopic diagnoses were chronic antral gastritis (70 %, n = 79) and normal endoscopy (11.5 %, n = 13). Of the 22 patients who underwent endoscopies because of bleeding, nine had peptic ulcers. Biopsies were taken from 66 % of the patients (n = 75). Histopathological analysis showed the presence of Helicobacter pylori in 71% (n = 53) of these patients and showed chronic gastritis in 93% (n = 70). The samples examined from this group of patients showed no signs of intestinal metaplasia, gastric atrophy or cancer. Conclusion: The indications for performing diagnostic upper endoscopy in children should be reconsidered and critically evaluated in order to increase the diagnostic yield and minimize exposure to inherent procedural risks. Current diagnostic yield is very low given that no relevant findings resulted from these procedures for many patients who consulted with a gastroenterologist simply because of abdominal pain, and ulcers were found in only 41% (9/22) of those who presented bleeding.

Keywords : Diagnostic value; upper gastrointestinal endoscopy; underage patients.

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