UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Pediatrics

Title: Intussusception

Keywords: Intussusception (PubMed Search)

Posted: 7/12/2008 by Don Van Wie, DO (Updated: 4/13/2024)
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      Intussusception
  •  Intussusception is the telescoping or prolapse of one portion of the bowel into an immediately adjacent segment.
  • 90 % occur at the terminal ileum (ie, ileocolic).
  • Male-to-female ratio is approximately 3:1.
  • Usually seen between 5-9 months of age and 66% of all cases are in the first year of life.
  • The classic triad of colicky abdominal pain, vomiting, and red currant jelly stools occurs in only 21% of cases
  • Currant jelly stools are observed in only 50% of cases.
  • Most patients (75%) without obviously bloody stools have stools that test positive for occult blood.
  • If intussusception is strongly suspected, perform a contrast or air  enema without delay.
  • Mortality with treatment is 1-3%.
  • If untreated, this condition is uniformly fatal in 2-5 days.