An 80-year-old male patient with a history of a hiatus hernia presented with acute abdominal pain and vomiting. CT of his abdomen revealed extraluminal free gas consistent with a perforation. He had a large hiatus hernia. The subdiaphragmatic portion of the stomach was distended and adopted a more transverse lie. The radiological findings were in keeping with acute gastric volvulus with secondary ischaemic complications. Acute gastric volvulus is an abnormal rotation of the stomach resulting in complete obstruction. It is a surgical emergency and does not always present in its classical form. Clinicians should be mindful of this diagnosis in patients presenting with an acute surgical abdomen, especially if the presentation is non-specific, as delays in diagnosis are associated with significant morbidity and mortality.
Gastric volvulus is a significant, rare cause of non-bilious vomiting and consists of a pathological rotation of the stomach of more than 180° around the axis without obstruction of the gastrointestinal tract. A definitive diagnosis is made with upper radiological gastrointestinal studies. Treatment may be conservative or surgical with anterior and fundal gastropexy in patients with ingravescent symptoms. We describe the case of a 16-month-old female admitted to our hospital for recurrent and postprandial vomiting episodes which had started at 11 months of age. A history of gastroesophageal reflux was present until 1 year of age, in association with recurrent respiratory infections. The basic metabolic panel was normal. Barium study showed stomach rotation along a horizontal plane stomach. Esophagogastroduodenoscopy showed no mucosal alterations. The diagnosis was chronic organoaxial gastric volvulus. In our patient, the surgical procedure of gastropexy, both anterior and fundal, without fundoplication was performed. She showed good improvement after surgery, with resolution of symptoms and weight gain.
Postprandial vomiting; Chronic gastric volvulus; Anterior; fundal gastropexy
A 70-yr-old woman complained of left sided chest pain and non-bilious vomiting for four days after taking a gastric bloating agent for an upper gastrointestinal study. The chest radiography revealed gastric air-fluid levels and bowel loops in the left thoracic cavity. An emergency thoracotomy was performed. The abdominal organs (stomach, spleen, splenic flexure of the colon) were in the left thorax and the entire left hemidiaphragm was absent. There were no diaphragmatic remnants visible for reconstruction of the left diaphragm. We provided warm saline irrigation and performed a left lower lobe adhesiotomy. Thirteen days after surgery, the chest radiography showed improvement in the herniation but mild haziness remained at the left lower lung field. Here we present the oldest case of congenital diaphragmatic agenesis presenting with transient gastric volvulus and diaphragmatic hernia.
Congenital Hemidiaphragmatic Agenesis; Mesenteroaxial Gastric Volvulus; Hernia, Diaphragmatic; Spontaneous Resolution
Between 1984 and 1994, 10 neurologically normal children between 2 and 24 months were diagnosed as having gastric volvulus with associated gastro-oesophageal reflux (GOR). The common features at presentation were episodic colicky abdominal pain, non-bilious vomiting, upper abdominal distension, haematemesis, and failure to thrive. Anterior gastropexy and conservative management of GOR was curative.
Gastric volvulus is a rare disease with an unknown incidence. Unless it stays in the back of the diagnostician's mind, diagnosis of gastric volvulus, which can have significant morbidity and mortality associated with it, can be easily missed. Unstable vital signs and distressed appearance are not always present, as in textbook cases. The presence of a hiatal hernia with persistent vomiting despite initial antiemetic treatment should trigger one to think of gastric volvulus, despite the patient appearing very stable. With the advent of CT and laparoscopic surgery, the gold standards for diagnosing and treating this disease are ever evolving.
An eighteen-month-old boy who had undergone a Ladd's procedure for malrotation in the newborn period presented with acute onset of nausea, vomiting, rectal bleeding, and confusion. Laparotomy revealed midgut volvulus, mesenteric lymphadenopathy and massive chylous ascites. Recurrent midgut volvulus following Ladd's procedure is extremely rare but should be borne in mind in cases of persistent or recurrent gastrointestinal symptoms. Timely surgery is necessary to avoid intestinal gangrene and decrease morbidity and mortality related to consequences of midgut volvulus.
Intestinal malrotation; Midgut volvulus, recurrent
Intestinal malrotation in the newborn is usually diagnosed after signs of intestinal obstruction, such as bilious emesis, and corrected with the Ladd procedure.
The objective of this report is to describe the presentation of severe cases of midgut volvulus presenting in infancy, and to discuss the characteristics of these cases.
We performed a seven year review at our institution and present two cases of catastrophic midgut volvulus presenting in the post-neonatal period, ending in death soon after the onset of symptoms. These two patients also had significant laboratory abnormalities compared to patients with more typical presentations resulting in favorable outcomes.
While most cases of intestinal malrotation in infancy can be treated successfully, in some circumstances, patients’ symptoms may not be detected early enough for effective treatment, and therefore may result in catastrophic midgut volvulus and death.
Malrotation; midgut volvulus; neonatal intensive care
Plain radiography and contrast radiologic studies are traditionally the main options in evaluating neonates presenting with bilious vomiting. While ultrasonography (US) is more available, its diagnostic accuracy is in question.
The purpose of this study is to determine the diagnostic accuracy of US in evaluating these patients with bilious vomiting.
Patients and Methods
All neonates with bilious vomiting or bilious nasogastric tube drainage presented to a children’s hospital in a 1.5-year period were included. US were performed in all patients. The results were compared with clinical and radiological data and the final diagnosis. We used chi-square and Fisher’s exact tests for analysis.
The cause of bilious vomiting for 18 of the 23 included patients was surgical. All patients labeled as surgical candidates by US ended in surgery [positive predictive value (PPV) = 100%], while only 50% of the patients with inconclusive US were operated [negative predictive value (NPV) = 50%, Confidence Interval (CI) 95%: 29%-71%]. The sensitivity and specificity of US in diagnosing intestinal atresia (n = 9) was 89% [CI 95%: (68% - 100%)] and 100%. In cases with malrotation (n = 4) and midgut volvulus (n = 2), sonographic diagnosis was in concordance with final surgical diagnosis.
This study suggested that in cases in which US makes a certain diagnosis, its accuracy eliminates the need for further diagnostic tests, but if it is inconclusive, further radiological contrast studies should be tried to make the final diagnosis.
Ultrasonography; Vomiting; Infant, Newborn; Bilious
Small bowel volvulus is a rare occurrence in the Western world and its occurrence after ileo-anal ouch formation is even rarer.
We report a case of a 26 year old lady who presented with small bowel volvulus and subsequent ischaemia and necrosis of her ileo-anal pouch created 5 years previously.
This case illustrates a rare but potentially devastating complication of ileo-anal pouch formation and as such the diagnosis should be borne in mind when a patient with a pouch presents with an acute abdomen.
A chronic, partial mesenteric volvulus was found on laparotomy of an adult Bernese mountain dog with a 4-month history of intermittent vomiting, diarrhea, and weight loss. The dog had elevated cholestatic and hepatocellular leakage enzymes, increased bile acids, azotemia, isosthenuria, and a hypokalemic, hypochloremic, metabolic alkalosis. The dog recovered fully following reduction of the volvulus.
An 11-year-old female child presented with abdominal pain, vomiting and constipation. An exploratory laparotomy revealed a cecal volvulus due to a congenital band and malfixation of the cecum. This was treated by excision of the band, derotation and decompression of cecum though an appendiceal stump suction.
Cecal volvulus; intestinal obstruction; malrotation
Gastric volvulus, organoaxial or mesenterioaxial, is a rare condition in infancy and childhood. We experienced 7 cases of pediatric gastric volvulus, consisting of 3 cases of secondary gastric volvulus due to left diaphragmatic eventration or paraesophageal hernia and 4 cases of idiopathic gastric volvulus. Of 7 cases, five were organoaxial in type and two were mesenterioaxial. The main symptoms of secondary gastric volvulus were vomiting and respiratory difficulty whereas those of idiopathic gastric volvulus were abdominal distension and weight loss with or without failure to thrive. It may be suspected on plain abdominal radiographs and usually confirmed by upper gastrointestinal series. Upper gastrointestinal series in organaxial volvulus demonstrated characteristic findings such as reversal of the greater and lesser curvatures and two air-fluid levels. In mesenterioaxial volvulus, the stomach was rotated into inverted position with pyloroantral obstruction showing a beak appearance. The three patients with secondary volvulus underwent repair of associated defect with or without gastropexy and the 3 patients with idiopathic volvulus underwent anterior gastropexy or gastrostomy. In those with idiopathic gastric volvulus, there was no obvious cause such as laxity of the perigastric ligaments. The operative results were satisfactory except for the three patients with idiopathic gastric volvulus whose abdomen remained distended regardless of weight gain.
The authors describe a case of gastric volvulus, which is a rare cause of gastric outlet obstruction. An 85-year-old man presented with nausea, vomiting, and epigastric pain. Admission abdominal radiograph demonstrated a grossly distended stomach with air-fluid levels. Multiple attempts at nasogastric tube placement failed. Endoscopy revealed a fluid-filled, tortuous stomach with a paraesophageal hernia, and the operator was unable to locate or pass the scope through the pylorus. Traditionally Borchardt's triad is believed to be diagnostic for acute gastric volvulus and consists of unproductive retching, epigastric pain and distention, and the inability to pass a nasogastric tube. The authors propose that the following features on endoscopy are highly suggestive of the most common type of volvulus (organoaxial): tortuous stomach, paraesophageal hernia, and inability to locate or pass the scope through the pylorus.
A 55-year-old woman presented with sudden onset upper abdominal pain and vomiting. On examination she had tender epigastric mass with “succusion splash” on auscultation. Straight abdominal x ray showed a distended and displaced stomach with another gas filled viscus around it. Subsequent computed tomography suggested caecal volvulus herniated through the epiploic foramen obstructing the gastric outlet. The patient underwent reduction of the internal hernia and right hemicolectomy. Postoperative recovery was uneventful. Herniation of caecal volvulus through the epiploic foramen is a very rare condition and its presentation as a gastric outlet obstruction has not been reported before.
Acute intrathoracic gastric volvulus occurs when the stomach undergoes organoaxial torsion in the chest due to either concomitant enlargement of the hiatus or a diaphragmatic hernia. Iatrogenic diaphragmatic hernia can occur after hiatal hernia repair and other surgical procedures, such as nephrectomy, esophagogastrectomy and splenopancreatectomy. We describe a 49-year-old woman who presented to our emergency department with acute moderate epigastric soreness and vomiting. She had undergone extensive gynecologic surgery including splenectomy 1 year before. The chest radiograph obtained in the emergency department demonstrated an elevated gastric air-fluid level in the left lower lung field. An urgent gastroscopy showed twisted structural abnormality of the stomach body. A computed tomography scan demonstrated the distended stomach, located in the left lower hemithorax through a left diaphragmatic defect. Emergent transthoracic repair was performed. Postoperative recovery was uneventful, and the patient did not experience any pain or difficulty with eating.
Gastric volvulus; Diaphragmatic hernia; Torsion; Emergency
Colonic obstruction due to sigmoid colon volvulus during pregnancy is a rare but complication with significant maternal and fetal mortality. We describe a case of sigmoid volvulus in a patient with 33 weeks of gestation that developed complete necrosis of the left colon. Case. 27-year-old woman was admitted with 3 days of abdominal distention, vomit, and the stoppage of the passage of gases and feces. She was admitted with poor clinical conditions with septic shock, acute respiratory distress syndrome, and signs of diffuse peritonitis. Abdominal radiography showed severe dilation of the colon with horseshoe signal suggesting a sigmoid volvulus, pneumoperitoneum and we could not we could not identify fetal heartbeats. With a diagnosis of complicate sigmoid volvulus she was underwent to the laparotomy where we found necrosis of all descending colon due to double twist volvulus of the sigmoid. We performed a colectomy with a confection of a proximal colostomy, and closing of the rectal stump. Due to an uncontrollable uterine bleeding during cesarean due, it was required a hysterectomy. The patient had an uneventful postoperative course thereafter and was discharged on a regular diet on the 15th postoperative day.
Acute sigmoid volvulus is typically caused by an excessively mobile and redundant segment of colon with a stretched mesenteric pedicle. When this segment twists on its pedicle, the result can be obstruction, ischemia and perforation. A healthy, 18-year-old Caucasian woman presented to the emergency department complaining of cramping abdominal pain, distention, constipation and obstipation for the last 72 h, accompanied by nausea, vomiting and abdominal tenderness. The patient had tympanitic percussion tones and no bowel sounds. She was diagnosed with acute sigmoid volvulus. Although urgent resective surgery seems to be the appropriate treatment for those who present with acute abdominal pain, intestinal perforation or ischemic necrosis of the intestinal mucosa, the first therapeutic choice for clinically stable patients in good general condition is considered, by many institutions, to be endoscopic decompression. Controversy exists on the decision of the time, the type of definitive treatment, the strategy and the most appropriate surgical technique, especially for teenagers for whom sigmoid resection can be avoided.
Acute sigmoid volvulus; Conservative treatment
Gastric volvulus is a rare but potentially life-threatening clinical entity due to possible gastric necrosis. A wandering spleen may also be associated with gastric volvulus. Patients presenting with the triad epigastralgia, vomiting followed by retching, and difficulty or inability to pass a nasogastric tube into the stomach are likely to have gastric volvulus. The operating surgeon should include this rare entity in the differential diagnosis when dealing with a patient with such a clinical profile. Herein, we present a case of gastric volvulus associated with a wandering spleen in a 28-year-old Caucasian woman and we provide a brief review of the literature on this issue.
Gastric volvulus is an uncommon clinical entity, first described by Berti in 1866. It is a rotation of all or part of the stomach through more than 180°. This rotation can occur on the longitudinal (organo-axial) or transverse (mesentero-axial) axis. This condition can lead to a closed-loop obstruction or strangulation. Traditional surgical therapy for gastric volvulus is based on an open approach. Here we report the case of a patient with chronic intermittent gastric volvulus who underwent a successful laparoscopic treatment.
A 34-year-old woman presented with multiple episodes of recurrent upper abdominal pain associated with retching and vomiting, treated unsuccessfully with intramuscular metoclopramide. Endoscopic examination of the upper digestive tract showed a suspected rotation of the stomach, and a chronic recurrent gastric volvulus was revealed by barium meal. The patient was operated on successfully, with an anterior laparoscopic gastropexy performed as the first surgical approach.
Experience with laparoscopic anterior gastropexy is limited only to a few described cases. Our patient was clinically and radiologically followed-up for 2 years with no evidence of recurrence, either radiological or symptomatic. Based on this result, laparoscopic gastropexy can be seen and considered as an initial 'gold standard' for the treatment of gastric volvulus.
Many reports have described sigmoid volvulus, but fatal hemorrhagic shock resulting from the rupture of the involved artery has not been reported as a complication of a sigmoid volvulus.
A 71-year-old man with slight abdominal pain and obstipation in hypotension died at a nursing home without seeing a doctor. At autopsy, a mesenteric hematoma and hemoperitoneum was observed with approximately 1,000 ml of blood in the abdominal cavity. The sigmoid colon and the mesentery were twisted at an adhesion site of a sigmoid colon to an ileum, and the condition was determined to be a sigmoid volvulus. The volvulus was observed to be loosened. The inferior mesenteric artery was incorporated into the twisted part of the mesentery, but remained patent, and its peripheral branch near the hematoma ruptured without histological abnormality.
Since ischemic-reperfusion injury occurs with a temporarily occluded artery, the acute re-loading of blood flow may injure the distal vessels after spontaneous reduction of compression by loosening of the volvulus.
sigmoid volvulus; complication; mesenteric hemorrhage; hemoperitoneum; ischemic-reperfusion injury
Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) know what others can and cannot see in a competitive situation. Does this reflect a general understanding the perceptions of others? In a study by Hare et al. (2000) pairs of chimpanzees competed over two pieces of food. Subordinate individuals preferred to approach food that was behind a barrier that the dominant could not see, suggesting that chimpanzees can take the visual perspective of others. We extended this paradigm to the auditory modality to investigate whether chimpanzees are sensitive to whether a competitor can hear food rewards being hidden. Results suggested that the chimpanzees did not take what the competitor had heard into account, despite being able to locate the hiding place themselves by the noise.
Social cognition; Food competition; Perspective taking
In western countries intestinal obstruction caused by sigmoid volvulus is rare and its mortality remains significant in patients with late diagnosis. The aim of this work is to assess what is the correct surgical timing and how the prognosis changes for the different clinical types.
We realized a retrospective clinical study including all the patients treated for sigmoid volvulus in the Department of General Surgery, St Maria Hospital, Terni, from January 1996 till January 2009. We selected 23 patients and divided them in 2 groups on the basis of the clinical onset: patients with clear clinical signs of obstruction and patients with subocclusive symptoms. We focused on 30-day postoperative mortality in relation to the surgical timing and procedure performed for each group.
In the obstruction group mortality rate was 44% and it concerned only the patients who had clinical signs and symptoms of peritonitis and that were treated with a sigmoid resection (57%). Conversely none of the patients treated with intestinal derotation and colopexy died. In the subocclusive group mortality was 35% and it increased up to 50% in those patients with a late diagnosis who underwent a sigmoid resection.
The mortality of patients affected by sigmoid volvulus is related to the disease stage, prompt surgical timing, functional status of the patient and his collaboration with the clinicians in the pre-operative decision making process. Mortality is higher in both obstructed patients with generalized peritonitis and patients affected by subocclusion with late diagnosis and surgical treatment; in both scenarios a Hartmann's procedure is the proper operation to be considered.
Volvulus of the stomach is a rare condition, but when acute it requires prompt diagnosis and treatment. Chronic volvulus occurs more frequently and does not always require treatment. Certain predisposing factors, such as abnormalities of the diaphragm, ulcers, or neoplasms, may be present.
Volvulus of the small bowel, although rare, carries a high risk of strangulation and ischemic necrosis. It is usually caused by the rotation of a loop of small intestine around an adhesion band or stoma. We present a case of an anterior gastropexy band, giving rise to a small bowel volvulus, necessitating resection due to infarction. This band resulted from separation of the most distal anterior gastropexy suture from the anterior abdominal wall. The distensible nature of the stomach and its resultant post-prandial gain in weight produced tremendous shearing forces on the gastropexy sutures, and, as our case demonstrates, a greater number of gastropexy sutures does not protect against this complication.
Volvulus; Small bowel; Anterior gastropexy; Laparoscopy
The exact aetiology of sigmoid volvulus in Parkinson's disease (PD) remains unclear. A multiplicity of factors may give rise to decreased gastrointestinal function in PD patients. Early recognition and treatment of constipation in PD patients may alter complications like sigmoid volvulus. Treatment of sigmoid volvulus in PD patients does not differ from other patients and involves endoscopic detorsion. If feasible, secondary sigmoidal resection should be performed. However, if the expected surgical morbidity and mortality is unacceptably high or if the patient refuses surgery, percutaneous endoscopic colostomy (PEC) should be considered. We describe an elderly PD patient who presented with sigmoid volvulus. She was treated conservatively with endoscopic detorsion. Surgery was consistently refused by the patient. After recurrence of the sigmoid volvulus a PEC was placed.
Colonic dysfunction; Colostomy; Endoscopic treatment; Parkinson’s disease; Sigmoid volvulus