Early Childhood Follow-up of Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia Survivors (CDH)

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Duke University




Hernia, Diaphragmatic

Study type


Funder types



392-1577 (Other Grant/Funding Number)

Details and patient eligibility


The primary objective of this study is to determine the medical and neurodevelopmental outcomes of congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) survivors at school-age (4-6 years) follow-up. It is generally assumed that older CDH survivors have normal daily function and are able to live normal lives, but this has not been adequately studied.

Full description

Congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) is a relatively rare malformation, seen in approximately 1 in 3000-5000 live births. The overall survival for infants born with CDH ranges from 50-70% despite continuing advances in prenatal diagnosis and post-natal medical and surgical care. Infants with CDH remain one of the most complex groups of patients to care for - both in the intensive care nursery and after hospital discharge. Several studies have shown that CDH survivors have predictable pulmonary, gastrointestinal, cardiac, and neurologic morbidities. In particular, CDH survivors are at an increased risk for growth and nutrition difficulties, including feeding problems, symptomatic gastroesophageal reflux, and failure to thrive. They are also more likely to suffer from chronic lung disease, bronchial hyperreactivity, and pulmonary hypertension. In addition, a significant number of CDH survivors show evidence of neurocognitive delay, hearing impairment, and behavioral disorders in follow-up studies. Most outcome studies of CDH survivors have focused on the 18-36 month follow-up period. However, there is a paucity of literature on longer-term, school-age outcomes of these children. In order that we might better understand the impact of our current CDH management protocols, it is imperative to determine whether the cognitive delays and other morbidities noted in these patients at an early age are of a transient nature, or persist throughout childhood. It is also crucial to develop a predictive model to understand which patients with CDH will undoubtedly develop long-term neurodevelopmental impairment. Collecting and sharing knowledge with the broader community of Neonatal Intensive Care providers who manage infants with CDH will ultimately help guide therapeutic strategies in the intensive care nursery so that parents can make informed decisions about aggressiveness of care and we may optimize the outcomes of this unique patient population.


16 patients




4 to 6 years old


No Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion criteria

Survivors of CDH who are at least 4 years old at the time of the study will be eligible for inclusion in the follow-up portion of the study.

Exclusion criteria

Spanish-speaking only children and families.

Trial design

16 participants in 1 patient group

CDH survivors
School age (ages 4-6) Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia survivors treated at Duke University Medical Center.

Trial contacts and locations



Data sourced from clinicaltrials.gov

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