Jejunal atresia

Jejunal atresia is a congenital anomaly characterised by obliteration of the lumen of the jejunum. The site of the atresia can be anywhere from the ligament of Treitz to the junction of the jejunum and ileum. At times there can be more than one atretic segment.

This article will focus on jejunal atresia alone but bear in mind that some cases correspond to jejunoileal atresia and show a mixed pattern, including the ones discussed in the ileal atresia article

Jejunal atresia has an incidence of about 1:1,000 live births and is more common than duodenal atresia.

Neonates typically present with abdominal distension and bilious vomiting within the first 24 hours of birth. These symptoms, however, do not allow for differentiation from a duodenal atresia.

The aetiology is thought to be from an in-utero ischaemic event.

Plain radiograph

The classic radiographic sign of jejunal atresia is that of a triple-bubble appearance for a proximal obstruction; it is equivalent to the double bubble sign of duodenal appearance plus a third bubble is caused by filling and distention of the jejunum by air. 

There can be multiple dilated small bowel loops proximal to the atresia and the number of dilated loops increase as point f atresia becomes more distal.

Fluoroscopy

Contrast enema typically shows micro colon (small unused colon)

Antenatal ultrasound

On plain radiograph consider:

On contrast enema consider:

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Article Information

rID: 7050
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Jejunoileal atresia (JA)
  • Jejuno-ileal atresia (JA)

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Cases and Figures

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    Case 1 : with triple bubble
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    Case 1 : with unused microcolon
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