FOUR NEWBORN children were admitted to the surgical service at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia in a four-year period with the unusual finding of a spontaneous perforation of the stomach. Our interest in the problem was aroused, and it is our purpose here to record briefly the case histories on each of these patients, bring the literature up to date as to the occurrence of this lesion, and discuss possible etiological mechanisms by which it can occur.
REPORT OF CASES
Case 1.—This 5-day-old Negro boy was admitted to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia with a history that he had had an uneventful birth on Dec. 9, 1949, and had seemed perfectly normal for the first two days of life. On the evening of Dec. 11, 1949, it was noted that the baby was listless, refused his bottle, and became cyanotic, necessitating the use of oxygen. Next morning the respirations were