June 1955

Congenital Obstruction of the Small Intestine and Colon

AMA Arch Surg. 1955;70(6):808-817. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1955.01270120016003

Congenital obstruction of the small intestine and colon occurs much more frequently than has been generally realized. Considering atresia alone, the incidence, according to Webb and Wangensteen,15 in 1931, was about 1 in 20,000 births. However, some 20 years later Evans,4 after an extensive review of the world's literature, estimated the incidence to be about 1 in 1500 births and further calculated that this condition resulted in the death of about 3000 babies annually in the United States and of more than 50,000 in the rest of the world. Wilson, Nelson, and Harshbarger16 have estimated the number of children that are lost each year in the United States is about 2200. They further state that this latter figure is approximately the same as the number of deaths (through 55 years of age) from appendicitis in the United States in 1949 and also equals the deaths from rheumatic

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