Toxic megacolon (toxic colitis)

Abdomen | Gastroenterology | Toxic megacolon (toxic colitis) (Disease)


Term toxic megacolon is clinically acute toxic colitis with expansion may be complete or partial. Dilatation disease is potentially fatal and the nonobstructive dilation of the colon are more than 6 cm and signs of systemic toxicity.

Rapid distention may cause the following symptoms: abdominal pain; abdominal distension; abdominal tenderness to palpation and spontaneous; fever, dehydration; tachycardia and cardiovascular shock.

Causes and Risk factors

Risk factors in development of severe colitis in infection with C difficile include: malignancy, COPD, immunosuppressive therapy, renal failure or exposure to medication peristalsis: clindamicina.

In the past it was thought that this is a complication of ulcerative colitis. The toxic colon can actually complicate inflammatory colitis, ischemic, infectious and pseudomembranous irradiation. Very high incidence of toxic megacolon in pseudomembranous colitis. Colonic dilatation can be present in other disorders such as Hirschsprung disease, idiopathic megacolon, chronic constipation and false bowel obstruction. These patients do not develop systemic toxemia and toxic colon does not qualify.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Treatment consists in reducing colonic distension to decrease the risk of perforation, the administration of fluids to correct dehydration and electrolyte solutions and treating toxemia and precipitating factors. However, most cases of toxic megacolon will need surgery, such as colectomy (removal of the entire colon). Antibiotics may be administered to prevent a severe infection. ...

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