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Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) is a medical condition primarily
seen in premature infants, where portions of the bowel undergo
necrosis (tissue death). The condition is typically seen in
premature infants, and the timing of its onset is generally
inversely proportional to the gestational age of the baby at birth,
i.e. the earlier a baby is born, the later signs of NEC are
typically seen. Initial symptoms include feeding intolerance,
increased gastric residuals, abdominal distension and bloody
stools. Symptoms may progress rapidly to abdominal discoloration
with intestinal perforation and peritonitis and systemic
hypotension requiring intensive medical support.
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