Esophageal and Airway Treatment Program | Overview
The Esophageal and Airway Treatment Center at Boston Children's Hospital is dedicated to the care of infants, children and young adults with complex esophageal and airway problems. For our team, these very rare esophageal conditions are not rare at all. Since 2010, our clinicians have cared for more than 600 patients, making us the most experienced institution in the world when it comes to treating these complex conditions.
We use pioneering surgical treatments to help children with airway and esophageal problems. Our clinicians specialize in diagnosing and treating:
- esophageal atresia (EA)
- esophageal injury and trauma
- esophageal strictures
- hiatal hernias
- tracheal diverticulum
- tracheoesophageal fistula (TEF)
- tracheomalacia and bronchomalacia
Learn more about the conditions we treat.
Our approach to esophageal and airway problems
At the Esophageal and Airway Treatment Center, our goal is to help every child achieve a healthy esophagus and airway. Our world-renowned multidisciplinary team consists of experts from surgery, gastroenterology, pulmonology, anesthesia, otolaryngology, endocrinology, cardiology, feeding, nursing and social work. Together, we work collaboratively with your family to develop a care plan that is customized to your child's unique physical, emotional and social needs.
At Boston Children's, our philosophy is that a child's natural esophagus is always best. Our surgeons have pioneered the use of the Foker process to treat long-gap esophageal atresia and related problems. In cases where the esophagus cannot be salvaged, we are the only hospital in the world to offer esophageal replacement using jejunal interposition.
Although surgery can repair esophageal disorders, these are chronic conditions that require long-term follow-up care. For some, esophageal strictures or acid reflux can develop and require ongoing monitoring and medical treatment - even if they don't cause any obvious symptoms. Children with esophageal atresia are at higher risk for developing Barrett's esophagus (a precancerous condition), which we actively monitor to prevent.
For children with tracheomalacia and other complex airway disorders, we have unmatched expertise in procedures such as aortopexy, tracheopexy and tracheoplasty. Patients also have access to minimally invasive techniques, such as robotic procedures, which result in less pain and scarring and faster recovery. The Center's advanced outpatient clinic provides long-term follow-up care for patients who may face challenges after surgery, such as feeding and respiratory difficulties.