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Idiopathic small-intestinal inflammation after colectomy for ulcerative colitis.

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Severe ileostomy dysfunction with high ileostomy volumes or severe diarrhea after panproctocolectomy and restorative ileo-anal pouch formation are a rare but serious development after surgery for ulcerative colitis (UC). The incidence, severity, morbidity, and mortality are poorly documented in the literature.

METHODS: We describe the case of a patient who developed life-threatening diarrhea after surgery for UC and review the literature.

RESULTS: Eight cases have now been described in the literature. Small-bowel disease has developed up to 17 months after colectomy. Most cases responded to corticosteroid therapy. A single case in which this treatment was delayed was fatal.

CONCLUSIONS: This is a rare sequel to colectomy for UC, but one which is serious and can be fatal. If the diagnosis is made promptly, a full response to treatment can be expected and the long-term outlook is excellent.

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