An uncommon condition in babies that blocks food from getting into their small intestine is called pyloric stenosis. The pylorus which is located between the stomach and small intestine holds the food in the stomach before the next stage in the digestive process. When the muscles thicken and become abnormally large that can lead to blocking of food from reaching the small intestine, pyloric stenosis occurs.
Surgery is the treatment for this condition. This condition can lead to dehydration, vomiting or weight loss and infants with this condition might seem to be hungry all the time and rare for babies older than 3 months.
Signs and symptoms of pyloric stenosis include:
persistent hunger – most of the time they want to eat after vomiting
vomiting after feeding – the baby may have projectile vomiting, at first it is mild then will gradually become severe as the pylorus opening narrows and sometimes blood will be in it
dehydration – crying without tears or will become lethargic
stomach contractions – this may happen after feeding but not before vomiting
weight problems – your baby will not gain weight or may even have weight loss
changes in bowel movements – your baby might be constipated because this condition prevents food from reaching the intestines
The treatment of pyloric stenosis is surgery which is called pyloromyotomy. Your baby can have fluid replacement first before the surgery if your baby is dehydrated or have an electrolyte imbalance. The surgeon will make an incision through the outside layer of the pylorus muscle that will allow the inner lining to come out, this can open a channel for food to pass.
An instrument called laparoscope will be inserted through a small cut near the navel of the baby. After the surgery, your baby may want to feed more often. Your baby will be given intravenous fluids until he can eat, you can start feeding him again within 12 to 24 hours. Some vomiting may still continue after a few days of surgery. Infection and bleeding may be complications after the surgery.
Preventing pyloric stenosis is not possible but if you know the symptoms you might help your child get the care that he needs and you may prevent complications such as:
FindATopDoc is a trusted resource for patients to find the top doctors in their area. Be visible and accessible with your up to date contact
information, certified patients reviews and online appointment booking functionality.