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January 1982

Survival After Massive Small Intestinal Resection in a Neonate

Author Affiliations

Departments of Pediatrics and Surgery University of Hawaii School of Medicine Kapiolani-Children's Medical Center 1319 Punahou St Honolulu, HI 96826

Am J Dis Child. 1982;136(1):79-80. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1982.03970370081026

Massive resection of necrotic areas of the small intestine may be required in the treatment of catastrophic gastrointestinal emergencies in the newborn infant, including necrotizing enterocolitis, multiple intestinal atresias, and malrotation with volvulus. The potential for survival following such massive surgery depends on the site and extent of the resection.1 However, the minimum length of residual small intestine required for survival remains in question. We describe herein the survival of a child with only 12 cm of small intestine following resection in the neonatal period. She is now healthy and developmentally normal at 26 months of age.

Report of a Case.—A full-term, 3,300-g, female infant was born on July 20, 1978, without complications to a gravida 3, para 2, 31-year-old woman. At 23 hours of age, emesis and abdominal distention developed, followed by tachypnea and systemic hypotension. A roentgenogram of the abdomen showed moderate distention of the proximal