Esophageal Atresia/Tracheoesophageal Fistula (EA/TEF) is a birth defect in which the esophagus fails to properly connect the mouth to the stomach, leading to life-threatening airway and digestive problems. Many babies with EA/TEF also have other birth defects affecting the heart, gastrointestinal, musculoskeletal or urogenital systems. For children with EA/TEF, expert and timely diagnosis and treatment, such as that available at NewYork-Presbyterian, can be life-changing. At NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital and NewYork-Presbyterian Komansky Children’s Hospital, multidisciplinary teams of specialists provide children with EA/TEF a comprehensive and individualized plan of care that addresses each child’s unique needs throughout their childhood, giving them the best chance to thrive.
NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital’s Researching Esophageal Atresia for Children’s Health (REACH) Clinic provides coordinated multidisciplinary care that addresses all facets of a child’s EA/TEF conditions and conducts research to identify genetic abnormalities underlying EA/TEF and related anomalies.
What is Esophageal Atresia?
Esophageal atresia (EA) is a birth defect in which the esophagus fails to connect to the lower esophagus and stomach and instead ends in a blind pouch. Many babies have a connection between the trachea and esophagus, called a tracheoesophageal fistula (TEF). If left untreated, feeding is impossible and secretions from the mouth or stomach can freely pass into the lungs. Babies with EA and/or TEF must undergo surgical repair soon after birth.
Associated Birth Defects
Babies born with EA/TEF may have other birth defects including:
- Heart defects such as ventricular septal defects or Tetralogy of Fallot
- Defects with the gastrointestinal (digestive) system, like imperforate anus (incomplete or closed anal opening) or intestinal atresia (incomplete bowel formation)
- Defects in the urogenital tract can affect the production or release of urine
- Neurological and musculoskeletal defects like abnormalities of the spine, ribs, or arms
Babies born with EA/TEF may have symptoms including:
- Cyanosis – a bluish tint to the skin – during attempted feeding
- Coughing and choking with attempted feeding
- Poor feeding
Why Choose Us
Nationally Ranked Children’s Hospitals
Both NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital and NewYork-Presbyterian Komansky Children's Hospital are among the nation's leading centers for the diagnosis and treatment of childhood diseases. Both are major referral centers for complex and rare digestive disorders in infants, children, and adolescents.
Dedicated Digestive Disease Centers
NewYork-Presbyterian has two dedicated digestive care centers that specialize in the unique needs of children:
- The Center for Advanced Digestive Care at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center is one of the nation's leading multidisciplinary centers for the diagnosis and treatment of digestive diseases in adult and pediatric patients. The CADC provides a single point of access to some of the nation's best doctors, newest technologies, and advanced therapies.
- The NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition provides comprehensive pediatric care for a broad range of gastrointestinal, nutritional, and liver disorders. It has garnered a world-class reputation from its multidisciplinary team of physicians, researchers, dieticians, social workers, and nurses, and the unparalleled quality of its clinical programs and research accomplishments.
Outstanding Expertise and Multidisciplinary Management of Esophageal Atresia/Tracheoesophageal Fistula
NewYork-Presbyterian has decades of experience in the treatment of infants born with EA/TEF, providing the most advanced technological approaches to repair the abnormality and the multidisciplinary management of the long-term conditions associated with EA/TEF.
- The Researching Esophageal Atresia for Children’s Health (REACH) Clinic at NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital provides coordinated multidisciplinary care that addresses all facets of a child’s EA/TEF conditions and conducts research to identify genetic abnormalities underlying EA/TEF and related anomalies.
Access to World-Class Pediatric Specialists
Your child's healthcare team has access to all of the various pediatric medical and surgical subspecialists who practice at NewYork-Presbyterian, ensuring that all of your child's medical needs can be addressed.