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Hematochezia in Infants Less Than 6 Months of Age

Am J Dis Child. 1986;140(11):1097-1098. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1986.02140250023019.
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Sir.—Rectal bleeding is a common problem seen by the general pediatrician. Traditionally, anal fissures have been accepted as the most common cause, although not all infants fit into this diagnostic category. Therefore, depending on the signs and symptoms, other clinical entities, eg, acute colitis of varying causes, must be considered.

There are few reports in the literature regarding the frequency of different diagnoses, especially in the infant less than 6 months of age. We investigated the frequency of different disorders that resulted in rectal bleeding in this age group and also determined the most useful laboratory and clinical tests to diagnose such disorders.

A retrospective analysis was made of all infants less than 6 months of age who were referred to our pediatric gastroenterology service because of rectal bleeding. If a diagnosis could not be made based on history and results of a physical examination, infants underwent a proctoscopy,


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