Intussusception in traditional pediatric, nontraditional pediatric, and adult patients.

Document Type


Publication Date



Emergency Medicine, Medical Education

Journal Title

The American journal of emergency medicine

MeSH Headings

Abdominal Pain, Adolescent, Adult, Age Factors, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Analysis of Variance, Chi-Square Distribution, Child, Child, Preschool, Confidence Intervals, Female, Humans, Ileal Diseases, Infant, Intussusception, Male, Middle Aged, Retrospective Studies, Young Adult


STUDY OBJECTIVES: We sought to determine the rate of intussusception in 3 age groups (traditional pediatric-age [T], nontraditional pediatric-age [N], and adult-age [A]) and to compare group characteristics.

METHODS: We conducted a retrospective records review for patients discharged with diagnosis of intussusception between October 1999 and June 2008.

RESULTS: Ninety-five cases of intussusception were diagnosed as follows: 61 T (64%), 12 N (13%), and 22 A (23%). Bloody stool was more common in T patients (P = .016). Air contrast enema (36%) and ultrasound (33%) were the most common diagnostic tests in T, whereas computed tomography was most common in N (83%) and A (68%) patients. Bowel resection occurred more often in older (T) patients (P = .001). The most frequent causative pathologic conditions were adenitis (T), Peutz-Jeghers polyp (N), and carcinoma (A) and prior gastric bypass in 10 A patients.

CONCLUSIONS: The incidence of intussusception is substantially higher in nontraditional age groups than previously reported. Symptoms, management strategies, and causative pathologic conditions varied with age. All adults with intussusception require definitive diagnostic testing to determine the cause, given the concerning list of possibilities we observed.



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