Lightning Learning: Intussusception

Lightning Learning: Intussusception

“Intussusception accounts for up to 25% of all abdominal emergencies in children up to the age of five.”
— advice is based on local guidelines & procedures

What?

Intussusception is the most common cause of intestinal obstruction in children aged from 5 months to 3 years. It accounts for up to 25% of all abdominal emergencies in children up to the age of 5.

  • Acute presentation to the Emergency Department

  • Most common in boys

  • Bowel “telescopes” in on itself (see diagram)

  • No known cause identified, but may be linked to infection

Why?

Spasms of acute colicky pain followed by lethargy/paleness.

?palpable “sausage shaped” mass, right upper quadrant and ‘red currant’ stools.

 

Reduced:

  • Bowel sounds

  • Blood flow to the affected part of the bowel

  • Function and bruising damage to the bowel tissue

Causing:

  • Dehydration due to vomiting

  • Ischaemia from lymphatic and venous obstruction

 

How?

 

Management

  • NGT insertion

  • IV bloods/correct dehydration

  • Abdo x-ray

Repair:

  • Air enema with analgesia

  • Surgical intervention

 
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