What is Pyloric Stenosis?
Pyloric stenosis is a condition resulting in obstruction of the stomach. The pylorus is a muscle that opens allowing undigested food to exit the stomach and pass into the small intestine. In pyloric stenosis, this muscle thickens causing the obstruction. The condition typically occurs in babies at around two months of age.
The cause of pyloric stenosis is unknown but it is more common in boys. Because the stomach is obstructed, the babies will vomit, often forcefully, followed by weight loss. When suspected, the diagnosis is confirmed by ultrasound.
Once the baby is well hydrated, an operation is then performed to divide the pyloric muscle. By dividing the thickened muscle, the pylorus can then reopen allowing food to pass from the stomach into the intestine. The procedure, which can be performed through either small incisions using a camera or by a single incision around the belly button, is typically followed by rapid recovery.