Children who have Hirschsprung's disease are prone to a serious infection of the intestines called enterocolitis.

Enterocolitis is caused by stool backing up behind the immobile section of colon. The stagnant mass of stool provides a fertile environment for bacteria to grow. As the stool mass expands, it presses on the blood vessels in the walls of the colon. Decreased blood flow can lead to a breakdown of the lining of the colon (mucosa), making it susceptible to infection.

Enterocolitis can be a life-threatening complication. It's treated in the hospital with colon cleaning and antibiotics.

Mar. 28, 2013

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