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June 1959

Use of Gastrostomy in Pediatric Surgery

Author Affiliations

From the Surgical Service of Children's Hospital, and the Department of Surgery, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

AMA Arch Surg. 1959;78(6):904-907. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1959.04320060092012

Present-day surgery has been perfected to a point where the mortality rate for most of the standard operations is practically nil, provided the patient is an adult in reasonably satisfactory physical condition. On the other hand, when the same type of operation is performed on newborn infants, the mortality figures frequently approach 50%. The infant differs from the adult in many ways: His physiology is different; his immunologic response is different; his disease is different; he frequently has other associated anomalies; he is smaller in size, and his nursing care must be much more constant and exacting. By reviewing the autopsy material and case histories and combining such information with the facts cited above, we are constantly modifying our surgical approach, to decrease further the operative mortality rate for this particular group of patients.

Vomiting, with aspiration of gastric contents, is well known to be one of the major immediate