We here examine the demographic parameters of patients with Hirschsprung's disease. The study population includes all patients with histologically confirmed disease treated at the Children's Hospital Medical Center of Boston over the 25-year period extending from 1961 through the first quarter of 1986. There were 179 cases. Overall, children with Hirschsprung's disease were found less likely to be first born (P less than .01). This relationship was seen to persist irrespective of maternal age, maternal race, or type of disease. The implications of this finding are discussed. Overall, 22% of these children had one or more associated abnormalities involving the neurological, cardiovascular, urological, and gastrointestinal systems. Many of the disorders appeared to be related to neurocrestopathies. Frequent associations included Down's syndrome, defects in cardiac septation, tetralogy of Fallot, and Dandy-Walker syndrome. These conditions occurred more frequently than would have been predicted through chance alone. This study found no association between an increased maternal age and the occurrence of Hirschsprung's disease. This study also found that approximately 7% of the affected children had been born prematurely.