Bedside upper gastrointestinal series in the neonatal intensive care unit

Choeum Kang, Haesung Yoon, Hyun Joo Shin, Ho Sun Eun, Kook In Park, Mi Jung Lee

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Background: In neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) patients with intubation status, fluoroscopic evaluation for the bowel is limited. This study was to evaluate the utility of bedside upper gastrointestinal (UGI) series with delayed radiographs (DR) for assessing duodenojejunal junction (DJJ) and small bowel passage in NICU patients with nonspecific bowel ultrasonography and contrast enema findings. Methods: We reviewed clinical and imaging data for bedside UGI with DR of NICU patients from 2014 to 2019. Five abdominal radiographs were obtained at fixed time intervals of immediately after, 1 min, 5 min, 1 h, and 2 h following the administration of 5 cc/kg isotonic water-soluble contrast agent via the nasogastric tube. Results: Twenty bedside UGI with DR were performed in 17 patients (weight range: 520-3620 g, age range: 0–4 months). Confidence identifying the DJJ was either good (n = 7) or equivocal (n = 8) at immediate or 1 min radiographs. The DJJ could not be evaluated in five from four delayed passage (including two meconium plug syndrome and one gastric volvulus) and one inadequate timing. There was only one case of intestinal malrotation, which was not detected on ultrasonography, but detected at the first UGI examination with good DJJ confidence. Conclusions: Bedside UGI with DR can evaluate intestinal malrotation using immediate and 1 min delay and small bowel passage using 1 and 2 h delay images in NICU patients with nonspecific ultrasonographic and contrast enema findings. The majority with delayed contrast passages can have bowel pathology. Because of a small number of patients in this study, further studies with more infants are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number91
JournalBMC Pediatrics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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