Twenty cases of intestinal obstruction in infants and children were managed by gastrointestinal tube stent plication. The mean age was 2.6 years, and ten patients were infants. Previous (often multiple) abdominal operations were performed in 18 patients with a variety of anomalies. Tube plication was used at initial operation in two neonates with malrotation.
Following lysis of adhesions, a No. 12 or No. 16 tube (usually a Baker tube) was inserted by gastrostomy and advanced distally into the colon. The tube was kept in place for ten days, with caloric needs supplied by parenteral alimentation. Barium tubogram showed distal patency, and the tube was removed. Eighteen patients survived (90%), and obstruction was relieved in each instance. These observations suggest that gastrointestinal tube stent plication is a useful adjunctive procedure in carefully selected cases of recurrent adhesive intestinal obstruction in infants and children.