Sonographic signs of neutropenic enterocolitis

Christoph-F Dietrich, Stella Hermann, Stefan Klein, Barbara Braden
World Journal of Gastroenterology: WJG 2006 March 7, 12 (9): 1397-402

AIM: To investigate the sonographic features at time of diagnosis and follow-up in patients with neutropenic enterocolitis.

METHODS: The sonographic findings in 14 patients with neutropenic enterocolitis were described and evaluated regarding symptoms and clinical outcome.

RESULTS: In all patients with neutropenic enterocolitis, the ileocoecal region was involved with wall thickening >10 mm. A transmural inflammatory pattern, hypervascularity of the thickened bowel wall and free abdominal fluid were the common findings. The sonographically revealed thickness of the bowel wall was associated with lethal outcome (P<0.03). In the 11 surviving patients,the improvement of clinical symptoms was accompanied by progressive reduction of intestinal wall thickness.

CONCLUSION: High-end sonography of the bowel is a helpful tool for diagnosis,assessment of prognosis and follow-up of patients with neutropenic enterocolitis.The ultrasonographically revealed bowel thickness reflects the severity and the course of the disease, and seems to be predictive for the clinical outcome.

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