The subject of peritonitis in the fetus following perforation of the large intestine is one which has rarely appeared in the American literature. Wing1 recently published a report of a case of peritonitis resulting from minute perforations of the cecum, and Porter2 briefly described a case of fetal peritonitis, but did not mention a perforation.
There seems to be much uncertainty in the literature as to what should be called fetal peritonitis. Hertzler,3 in discussing the question, said that he felt certain that many of the cases of so-called fetal peritonitis that have been described are merely cases in which there have been abdominal bands or ascites or both. He expressed the opinion that these intestinal bands are more common in earlier than in later fetal life and are developmental rather than inflammatory in origin. According to Hertzler, peritonitis in the sense of an inflammatory peritonitis is