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Treatment of recurrent respiratory papillomatosis with argon plasma coagulation

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 June 2007

W. Bergler*
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Clinic Mannheim, Germany.
M. Hönig
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Clinic Mannheim, Germany.
K. Götte
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Clinic Mannheim, Germany.
G. Petroianu
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Clinic Mannheim, Germany.
K. Hörmann
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Clinic Mannheim, Germany.
Address for correspondence: PD. Dr W. F. Bergler, Univ.-HNO-Klinik, Klinikum, 68135 Mannheim, Germany. Fax: 621-383-3827


Extension of recurrent respiratory papillomatosis (RRP) to the lower airway in children is life-threatening and an extremely difficult condition to treat. We present the case of a seven-year-old girl with progressive RRP since the age of two. Repeated CO2 laser treatment and interferon-alpha treatment could not prevent tracheotomy and spread to the trachea. We used argon plasma coagulation (APC) with flexible endoscopy for the first time for the treatment of RRP. APC gives a controlled limited penetration into the tissue and good control of bleeding. There is no carbonization or vaporization which makes it a suitable method for the treatment of lower airway RRP. After a few treatments with APC, we gained very good control of the disease with no side-effects or complications. The described application of APC seems to be a promising way to treat lower airway RRP.

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