Necrotizing Enterocolitis Associated with Congenital Heart Disease: a Different Entity?

J M Bubberman, A van Zoonen, J L M Bruggink, M van der Heide, R M F Berger, A F Bos, E M W Kooi, J B F Hulscher

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

18 Citaten (Scopus)


Background: Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) predominantly occurs in preterm infants (PT-NEC). In term neonates, NEC occurs more frequently when a congenital heart disease is present (CHDNEC). Our aim was to evaluate differences and similarities in disease characteristics of PT-NEC versus CHD-NEC.

Methods: In this retrospective case-control study we identified all CHD infants who developed NEC Bell's stage >= 2 in our center from 2004 to 2014. We randomly selected (1:2 ratio) PT-NEC infants from the same period. Biochemical and clinical variables were retrieved from patient files.

Results: We found 18 CHD-NEC infants and selected 36 PT-NEC infants (gestational age 28.3 [25-35.6] weeks vs. 38.6 [31.7-40.7] weeks). Postnatal age at onset was significantly lower in CHD-NEC patients (4 [2-24] vs. 11 [4-41] days, p <0.001). Lowest pH levels were lower (7.21 [7.01-7.47] vs. 7.27 [6.68-7.39], p = 0.02), and highest CRP levels were higher (112.5 mg/L [5.0-425.0] vs. 66.0 [52-189.0], p = 0.05) in PT-NEC vs. CHD-NEC. Anatomic localisation of the disease differed: the colon was significantly more often involved in CHD-NEC versus PT-NEC (86% vs. 33%, p = 0.03). Mortality caused by NEC was not different (22% vs. 11%, p = 0.47).

Conclusion: While outcome of NEC in both groups is similar, the predominant NEC localisation differed between CHD-NEC and PT-NEC patients. This suggests that both variants of the disease have a different underlying pathophysiological mechanism that predisposes different intestinal regions to develop NEC.

Type of Study: Retrospective Case-Control Study. (C) 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)1755-1760
Aantal pagina's6
TijdschriftJournal of Pediatric Surgery
Nummer van het tijdschrift9
Vroegere onlinedatum13-dec-2018
StatusPublished - sep-2019

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