We describe a healthy neonate with abdominal distention, inadequate ventilation, and delayed extubation during anesthesia for minor surgery. Following rectal decompression and successful extubation, extreme abdominal distention recurred postoperatively after ingestion of clear fluids. We elicited a history of frequent and excessive flatus from the parents, and abdominal radiography revealed distended loops of small bowel with small lung volumes suggestive of aerophagia. The differential diagnosis of aerophagia is reviewed, the anesthetic implications discussed, and relevant literature pertaining to this condition summarized.
- Nitrous oxide
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine