Bowel obstruction in children

Bowel obstruction in children

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Let's imagine a sock turned over. Something similar to this everyday event, but extrapolated to the intestine, is what is known as 'invagination'.

Although it can appear at any time in life, this disease is the most common cause of obstruction between 3 months and 6 years of age.

Parents often wonder why this has happened to our children. Well, in 95% of invaginations, doctors find no explanation or cause. This is, most often it appears like this just because. Only in 5% of cases, are they secondary to another process (enlarged lymph nodes, hematomas, tumors, diverticula, etc.).

From a clinical point of view, this picture is very cumbersome. The little one begins to vomit. Later, he manifests a very striking irritable cry (different from a typical tantrum), associated with stretching / shrinking of the legs, and with obvious gestures of pain. If the condition progresses, the child will become sleepy and pale, his heart rate will increase, he will appear cold sweat, and he may pass a bloody stool (what we call 'currant jelly stool').

The diagnosis is confirmed thanks to an abdominal ultrasound, in which we can see the 'donut sign' or an image in the intestine like 'false kidney'.

The treatment of this intestinal obstruction depends on two factors: the time of evolution and the type of intussusception. Invaginations that take a short time to evolve can be reduced with a simple enema or blowing air through the bum. On the other hand, if it has been more than 48 hours old, surgical treatment is chosen. Secondary treatment consists of correcting the cause that is motivating it individually.

Therefore, and in summary, this is one of the most serious processes in which crying and irritability are the 'guiding symptoms'. The prognosis depends on its early diagnosis and treatment. Use common sense to figure this out, and be aware that a child over three months of age who cries emphatically and who constricts or stretches his legs in a very conspicuous way may develop intussusception.

You can read more articles similar to Bowel obstruction in children, in the category of Childhood Diseases on site.

Video: intestinal obstruction. Metro College of Nursing (February 2023).