Pharyngomalacia diagnosed by laryngo-tracheo-bronchoscopy in
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Flexible fiberoptic laryngo-tracheo-bronchoscopy is widely performed in infants and neonates since the introduction of thin flexible fiberscopes. Laryngomalacia is the most common airway disease in infants causing stridor. Pharyngomalacia, termed as pharyngeal occlusion during inspiration, was the second most common airway disease in patients that underwent laryngo-tracheo-bronchoscopy, but the incidence, patient characteristics, and natural course have not been reported.

A retrospective review of medical records on patients admitted to our NICU during the neonatal period diagnosed with pharyngomalacia was performed. Patient characteristics, concurrent airway diseases, comorbidities, and treatment were reviewed.

--48 patients were diagnosed with pharyngomalacia. The median gestational age was 37.1 weeks, and the median birth weight was 2552 g.

--Patients were diagnosed at a median age of 29 days, and cure was achieved at a median age of 4 months.

--28 patients had concurrent airway diseases, laryngomalacia being the most common.

--Continuous positive airway pressure or high flow nasal cannula was used in 34 patients.

In conclusion, half of pharyngomalacia patients were born prematurely, and more than half had other airway diseases. In more than half of the patients, onset and diagnosis occurred within the first month of life, and resolution occurred mainly within the first six months of life. The pharyngeal space should be closely observed if a patient is suspected of having an airway condition to diagnose pharyngomalacia.