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January 1991

Characteristics of Perinatal Cocaine-Exposed Infants With Necrotizing Enterocolitis

Author Affiliations

Children's Mercy Hospital University of Missouri—Kansas City School of Medicine 2401 Gillham Rd Kansas City, MO 64108-9898

Am J Dis Child. 1991;145(1):26-27. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1991.02160010028005

Sir.—Recently, attention has been directed at the complications related to cocaine use during pregnancy, including placental abruption, spontaneous abortion, intrauterine growth retardation, and premature labor and delivery.1,2 Neonatal complications have also been noted, including neurobehavioral disturbances, microcephaly, intrauterine cerebrovascular accidents, and possibly malformations secondary to vascular disruptions.3-5 Previous reports have suggested that intrauterine cocaine exposure may also be associated with neonatal necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC).6,7 We report a retrospective review of the relationship between perinatal cocaine exposure and the development of NEC in the newborn period.

Patients and Methods.#x2014;All admissions to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at a medical center that provides care to an urban indigent population were reviewed from July 1987 through June 1989. Infants with perinatal cocaine exposure who developed NEC during this period were compared with nonexposed infants. Infants were designated to have had perinatal cocaine exposure if (1) maternal urine

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