Do geography and resources influence the need for colostomy in Hirschsprung’s disease and anorectal malformations? A Canadian association of paediatric surgeons: Association of paediatric surgeons of Nigeria survey

  • LO Abdur-Rahman
  • A Shawyer
  • R Vizcarra
  • K Bailey
  • BH Cameron
Keywords: Africa, anorectal malformation, colostomy, Hirschsprung’s, North America, paediatric surgery


Background: This survey compared surgical management of Hirschsprung’s disease (HD) and anorectal malformations (ARM) in high and low resource settings.

Materials and Methods: An online survey was sent to 208 members of the Canadian Association of Paediatric Surgeons (CAPS) and the Association of Paediatric Surgeons of Nigeria (APSON).

Results: The response rate was 76.8% with 127 complete surveys (APSON 34, CAPS 97). Only 29.5% of APSON surgeons had frozen section available for diagnosis of HD. They were more likely to choose full thickness rectal biopsy (APSON 70.6% vs. CAPS 9.4%, P < 0.05) and do an initial  colostomy for HD (APSON 23.5% vs. CAPS 0%, P < 0.05). Experience with transanal pull-through for HD was similar in both groups (APSON 76.5%, CAPS 66.7%). CAPS members practising in the United States were more  likely to perform a one-stage pull-through for HD during the initial hospitalization (USA 65.4% vs. Canada 28.3%, P < 0.05). The frequency of colostomy in females with vestibular fistula varied widely independent of
geography. APSON surgeons were less likely to have enterostomal  therapists and patient education resources.

Conclusions: Local resources which vary by geographic location affect the management of HD and ARM including colostomy. Collaboration between
CAPS and APSON members could address resource and educational needs to improve patient care.

Key words: Africa, anorectal malformation, colostomy, Hirschsprung’s, North America, paediatric surgery


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eISSN: 0189-6725