Necrotizing enterocolitis

Clin Perinatol. 2008 Mar;35(1):251-72, x. doi: 10.1016/j.clp.2007.11.009.


In necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) the small (most often distal) and/or large bowel becomes injured, develops intramural air, and may progress to frank necrosis with perforation. Even with early, aggressive treatment, the progression of necrosis, which is highly characteristic of NEC, can lead to sepsis and death. This article reviews the current scientific knowledge related to the etiology and pathogenesis of NEC and discusses some possible preventive measures.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cause of Death
  • Enterocolitis, Necrotizing / etiology*
  • Enterocolitis, Necrotizing / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Iatrogenic Disease / prevention & control
  • Infant, Low Birth Weight
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / etiology*
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / prevention & control
  • Risk Factors