Abdominal wall defect repair
After surgery, your baby will receive care in the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit. The baby will be placed in a special bed called an isolette. This bed has an incubator to keep your baby warm.
Your baby may need to be on a breathing machine until organ swelling has decreased and the size of the belly area has increased.
Other treatments your baby will probably need after surgery are:
Feedings are started through the NG tube as soon as your baby's bowel starts functioning after surgery. Feedings by mouth will start very slowly. Your baby may eat slowly and may need feeding therapy, lots of encouragement, and time to recover after a feeding.
The average stay in the hospital is a few weeks up to 4 months. You may be able to take your baby home once he or she is taking all foods by mouth and gaining weight.
After you go home, your child may develop a blockage in the intestines (bowel obstruction) due to a kink or scar in the intestines.
Most of the time, gastroschisis can be corrected with one or two surgeries. How well your baby does will depend on how much damage there was to the intestine.
After recovering from surgery, most children with gastroschisis do very well and live normal lives. Most babies who are born with gastroschisis do not have any other birth defects.
Ledbetter DJ. Gastroschisis and omphalocele. Surgical Clinics of North America. April 2006;86(2).
Cooney D. Defects of the abdominal wall. Pediatr Surg. 1998;2:1045-1070.
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