What Is Intussusception?
occurs when a one part of the intestine folds into another part. This causes a
blockage in the intestine. The blockage prevents food and waste from properly
moving through. Intussusception can occur any place in the intestinal tract,
but it is most common where the small and large intestines meet.
also called bowel obstruction, is a potentially life-threatening condition. It
affects blood supply to the intestine and can lead to tissue death. If left
untreated, it can lead to infection, internal bleeding, tearing, damage to the
intestines, and peritonitis.
is most common in children between two months and two years of age. It is four
times more prevalent in boys than in girls, according to The Children’s
Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). Older children, teenagers and
adults can also get intussusception, though these cases are rare.
What Causes Intussusception?
cause of intussusception is never found. However, viral infection, intestinal
surgery, polyps, and tumors can call cause it. Tumors, inflammation, or other
conditions may cause intussusception in older children and adults.
What Are the Symptoms of Intussusception?
signs and symptoms of intussusception include:
with blood or mucus
Symptoms of intussusception may come and go. It is easy to mistake intussusception for
colic or other minor digestive issues. Watch for episodes of irritability,
crying, and drawing up of the knees in babies or young children.
medical attention if your child shows signs of abdominal pain, especially with
vomiting and bloody stools.
How Is Intussusception Diagnosed?
will first do a physical examination and look for a mass in the abdomen. An X-ray
or ultrasound may help to confirm intussusception. The doctor may introduce
fluid or air into the rectum (via an enema). The fluid will show contrast for
an X-ray, which will help to identify blockages in the intestines.
How Is Intussusception Treated?
is the first step in treatment. In fact, an enema that is used to diagnose
intussusception may also help to treat it. Pressure from the air or fluid may
cause the intestine to correct itself. The result of an enema treatment might
not last, so patients usually stay in the hospital overnight for observation.
is another treatment option. Intussusception surgery involves either a large
incision or a small incision and a camera. This is called laparoscopic surgery.
The type of surgery depends on the location and severity of the obstruction.
surgery may include removal of the affected section of intestine. The intestine
is then reconnected with sutures.
What Is the Outlook for Intussusception?
Most people with intussusception recover normally if
they seek treatment early enough. If left untreated, intussusception can be life