oa Southern African Journal of Anaesthesia and Analgesia - Anaesthetic considerations in a prematurely born infant with congenital hypothyroidism presenting for cataract surgery : case study

Volume 19, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 2220-1181
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1173



Anaesthetic management of the premature infant is a challenge. This is owing to the immaturity of his or her organ systems and the possible presence of sequelae of premature birth, such as broncho pulmonary dysplasia, apnoea, patent ductus arteriosus and intra ventricular haemorrhage. The premature infant is at risk of developing postoperative apnoea, hypothermia and hypoglycaemia until his or her post gestational age is more than 60 weeks. Conditions such as congenital bilateral cataract and congenital hypothyroidism may be associated with other birth defects and syndromes. Recommendations for early cataract surgery may necessitate an aesthetising premature infants with post conceptional ages less than 60 weeks, or those who have had recently diagnosed medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism. We describe the anaesthetic considerations in a, so far, unreported scenario of a premature infant with bilateral congenital cataract and congenital hypothyroidism who presented for cataract surgery.

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