Neonatal gastric perforation: a report of two cases and a systematic review

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Neonatal gastric perforation is a rare and life-threatening disorder in neonates and is associated with high morbidity and mortality. However, the exact mechanisms of neonatal gastric perforation remain unknown.

Patient concerns:

In this study, we reported 2 cases of neonatal gastric perforation and conducted a systematic review to analyze the prognostic factors for mortality.


Two neonates received a diagnosis of gastric perforation based on clinical presentation and imaging studies. The 2 patients underwent emergent surgery, which yielded favorable outcomes.


We reviewed 168 cases from the literature as well as our 2 cases to analyze whether mortality in neonatal gastric perforation is associated with sex, gestational age, operation type, perforation location, or timing of perforation.


The results revealed that mortality was significantly higher in preterm neonates (n = 80, P < .01) and the mortality group had a lower birth weight (n = 73, P < .05). The timing of perforation in the preterm subgroup was significantly earlier than that in the full-term subgroup (n = 90, P < .05). The outcomes about mortality of gastric perforation were significantly associated with preterm neonates (adjusted odds ratio: 4.21, 95% confidence interval: 1.28–13.88, P < .05).


This study shows the prognostic factor of gastric perforation was significantly associated with preterm neonates. Furthermore, low-birth-weight full-term neonates had a relatively higher mortality rate than the normal-birth-weight full-term neonates. In addition, preterm neonates have an earlier timing of perforation.

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