Ischemic colitis has a worse prognosis when isolated to the right side of the colon

John Sotiriadis, Lawrence J Brandt, Daniel S Behin, William N Southern
American Journal of Gastroenterology 2007, 102 (10): 2247-52

BACKGROUND: In general, ischemic colitis has a very good prognosis, but there is concern that when ischemia affects the right side of the colon in an isolated fashion, the prognosis may not be so favorable.

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to compare the clinical features and outcomes of ischemia isolated to the right side of the colon with those of ischemia involving other areas of the colon.

METHODS: A retrospective study was undertaken of patients with colon ischemia hospitalized at the Moses and Weiler Divisions of the Montefiore Medical Center during the interval 1998-2005. Patients were identified using computerized searches of ICD-9 codes for colon ischemia and were divided into two groups: those with isolated right colon ischemia (IRCI) and those with colon ischemia not involving the right colon in an isolated fashion (non-IRCI). Only patients with biopsy-proven ischemic colitis were entered into our study.

RESULTS: A total of 273 cases of biopsy-proven ischemic colitis were identified, of which 71 (26.0%) were isolated to the right side. Of these IRCI cases, 59.2% had an unfavorable outcome compared with 17.3% of cases of non-ICRI: 54.9% of IRCI patients required surgery compared with 10.9% of non-IRCI patients; mortality in patients with IRCI was 22.5% compared with 11.9% in patients with non-IRCI.

CONCLUSIONS: A total of 273 cases of biopsy-proven ischemic colitis were identified of which 71 (26.0%) involved only the right side. Patients with IRCI had a worse outcome than those with colon ischemia involving other colon regions, including a fivefold need for surgery and a twofold mortality.

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