Posts Tagged ‘ stomach surgery ’

Bottle-Fed Babies May Face Greater Stomach Obstruction Risk

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

Newborn babies who are bottle-fed are twice as likely to develop a relatively rare  stomach obstruction that can only be repaired surgically, according to a new study published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics. More from Today.com:

Researchers still don’t know why some babies develop the obstruction, known as hypertrophic pyloric stenosis, said the study’s lead author, Dr. Jarod McAteer, a surgery research fellow at Seattle Children’s Hospital. This study just pinpoints some of the factors that increase the risk, he added.

What scientists do know is that in certain infants, the one-way valve, or sphincter, that allows partially digested food to progress from the stomach to the small intestine can stop working when the muscle that controls the valve’s opening and closing gets too thick. At that point, the connection between the stomach and the small intestine is essentially blocked.

Babies are at risk only when they are between 3- and 6-weeks- old, McAteer said.

“Usually in the first couple of weeks of life, they are completely normal, healthy babies,” he said. “Then they start vomiting and it progressively gets worse over a period of several days until they can’t hold anything down.”

The only solution is surgery to cut the muscle so it will relax and allow food to pass, McAteer said.

For the new study, McAteer and his colleagues from the University of Washington compared 714 infants who developed hypertrophic pyloric stenosis to 7,140 “control” babies who did not develop the obstruction.

After accounting for other known risk factors for obstruction, such as being male and first born, the researchers determined that bottle feeding also significantly raised the risk. In fact, bottle feeding was twice as common among babies with an obstruction, at 19.5 percent, compared with those in the control group (9.1 percent).

Babies with older mothers were also more likely to develop HPS.

Image: Baby with bottle, via Shutterstock

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Commission: Magnetic Stress Balls Dangerous to Children

Monday, March 12th, 2012

A number of brands of small magnetic balls that are designed to alleviate stress in adults are causing serious problems for children, because kids are swallowing them and requiring serious abdominal surgery as a result.  CNN.com reports:

They are powerful pea-size magnets marketed as stress relievers for harried adults but called a safety risk for children by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The magnets are sold under the brand names Buckyballs and Nanospheres among others.

“We want parents to be aware of the danger associated with these innocent-looking magnets,” safety commission Chairman Inez Tenenbaum said in a November statement. “The potential for serious injury and death if multiple magnets are swallowed demands that parents and medical professionals be aware of this hidden hazard and know how to treat a child in distress.”

The Consumer Product Safety Commission then reported 22 incidents involving the magnets from 2009 through October. “Of the reported incidents, 17 involved magnet ingestion and 11 required surgical removal of the magnets. When a magnet has to be removed surgically, it often requires the repair of the child’s damaged stomach and intestines,” the commission statement said.

The Buckyballs website has posted a public service announcement video reminding parents that their product is not intended for children.  Five warnings appear on the product’s packaging as well.

Image: Buckyballs, via http://everyjoe.com/

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