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J Pediatr Surg. 1990 Mar;25(3):297-300.

An individualized approach to the management of gastroschisis.

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Department of Surgery, Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus.


A 93% survival rate was achieved in 80 neonates treated for gastroschisis between 1979 and 1986. Uncomplicated gastroschisis occurred in 70 infants (88%); 51% underwent staged silo reduction and 49% had primary fascial closure. Gastroschisis associated with intestinal atresia or volvulus was present in 10 neonates (12%), half of whom had a residual jejunoileum between 10 and 55 cm. Major postoperative complications included gastrointestinal problems (infarction, obstruction, and prolonged dysfunction), wound infection, and catheter-associated difficulties (sepsis, infiltration, and malposition). Three of the six deaths were related to associated conditions (extreme prematurity, trisomy 13, and multiple anomalies) and three were caused by intraoperative hemorrhage, necrotizing enterocolitis, and extensive short-bowel syndrome. No statistical difference in morbidity, mortality, and length of hospitalization was demonstrated between infants treated by silo reduction and primary closure. Safe management of gastroschisis should include an individualized assessment of visceroabdominal disproportion and degree of intraabdominal tension. Vigilant expectation of potentially life-threatening complications is required to decrease postoperative morbidity, irrespective of the technique of abdominal wall closure.

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