Background and Aims Cystic Echinococcosis (CE) is a serious multi-organ disease, caused by cestode infection with Echinococcus granulosus. Simultaneous hepatopulmonary or isolated pulmonary hydatidosis in children are rare and demand an individual, but often multidisciplinary case management.
Methods We report on two gigantic CE-manifestations in children. The first case was a 4-year-old boy, presenting with severe pneumonia and abdominal pain in case of hepatopulmonary hydatidosis. The second case was a 6-year-old boy, who presented with continuous coughing in case of isolated, bilateral pulmonary hydatidosis. While the 4-year-old displayed a severely reduced state of health, the 6-year-old showed good general condition.
Results Serologic tests for Echinococcus granulosus infection were negative in either case. The diagnosis of CE was solely based on diverse imaging methods in both entities. While the 4-year-old boy was first treated for his secondary pneumonia, the 6-year-old demanded imminent anthelmintic and surgical treatment due to a ruptured pulmonary cyst with threat of secondary agent dissemination. Finally both patients were discharged after a two-step surgical cyst removal and with continued anthelmintic longterm therapy, which led to restitutio ad integrum in either case.
Conclusions Although a proper multidisciplinary CE-management has evolved in the past decades, an evidence-based evaluation of its outcome, especially in children, is not yet available. Serologic tests for CE-infection are very often tested false-negative, so that the initial diagnosis is mainly image-based. The urge of anthelmintic and/or surgical treatment depends on the Stage of the CE-infection, not on the general condition of the patient.