How is this problem fixed?
Your baby will need surgery to fix the problem. If your baby has atresia, first the swallowing tube must be connected to the stomach. Then, if a fistula is connecting the esophagus to the trachea, it must be closed. Your child's doctor will decide when to do the surgery. If the baby isn't premature and doesn't have any other problems (such as pneumonia or other birth defects), the surgery can usually be done when the baby is just a few days old.
How long will my baby be sick?
In uncomplicated cases, your baby may be eating as soon as one week after surgery. Meanwhile, until your baby can swallow milk or formula, your baby will be fed through a vein (this is called an "IV") or through a stomach tube. Your baby will stay in the hospital during this time.
However, if your baby was premature or if the operation was complicated, the recovery time might be a little longer.
Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff