Friday, January 11, 2008

One Liner

When you see a 10-hour-old Caucasian newborn with severe vomiting and abdominal distention who has not yet passed any stool, you confirm your diagnosis by licking the baby.

Challenge: What is the diagnosis?

Related Questions:
1. What is the vomiting, abdominal distension, and absence of stool called?
2. What did you find when you licked the baby?

Note: I decided not to take a suggestion to name this case "Lollipop."


Alex said...

1. in a baby, meconium ileus
2. sign of CF, you tasted salty stuff

therefore, this case should be called "beef jerky" or "don't lick meconium aspirate" instead of "lollipop." you had me googling for the taste of downe's, DKA, or anything sweet

Craig said...

One Liner

The first stool of a newborn is called the meconium and is composed of the stuff ingested while in utero. It is sterile, viscous, and has no odor. Meconium is usually passed within 6 hours after birth. If it becomes congested in the ileum, as is the case here, this is meconium ileus. This is usually a manifestation of cystic fibrosis. In cystic fibrosis patients, the sweat will taste particularly salty because of a mutation in the CFTR chloride ion channel. Cystic fibrosis is an autosomal recessive disease common among Europeans and Ashkenazi Jews that leads to pulmonary and pancreatic symptoms. There is no cure and life expectancy is 37.5 years.

Sources: Wikipedia, eMedicine.