October 1981

Acute Zinc Deficiency in a Premature Infant After Bowel Resection and Intravenous Alimentation

Author Affiliations

University of Connecticut Health Center Farmington, Conn

Am J Dis Child. 1981;135(10):968-969. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1981.02130340072024

Zinc deficiency in the newborn has primarily been associated with prolonged parenteral alimentation without adequate zinc supplementation. Affected infants, usually premature infants, fail to thrive despite adequate caloric intake, and irritability, lethargy, and an extensive perioral and diaper rash indistinguishable from that seen in acrodermatitis enteropathica are symptoms of this condition.1 The contribution of previous gastrointestinal (GI) disturbance (chronic diarrhea or malabsorption) to the development of zinc deficiency in the neonate has received little attention. We report a case of zinc deficiency in a premature infant who received parenteral alimentation with preexisting GI disease.

Report of a Case.—A 1.3-kg female infant was born to a 28-year-old woman (gravida 3, para 2) at 29 weeks' gestation. After resuscitation, a large pneumoperitoneum was noted, and, at surgery, a perforation of the distal ileum and peritoneal adhesions were found. Six centimeters of ileum was resected, and proximal and distal ileostomies were constructed. Results

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