Small Bowel Obstruction

Katie Love Bower, Daniel I Lollar, Sharon L Williams, Farrell C Adkins, David T Luyimbazi, Curtis E Bower
Surgical Clinics of North America 2018, 98 (5): 945-971
Identifying patients with small bowel obstruction who need operative intervention and those who will fail nonoperative management is a challenge. Without indications for urgent intervention, a computed tomography scan with/without intravenous contrast should be obtained to identify location, grade, and etiology of the obstruction. Most small bowel obstructions resolve with nonoperative management. Open and laparoscopic operative management are acceptable approaches. Malnutrition needs to be identified early and managed, especially if the patient is to undergo operative management. Confounding conditions include age greater than 65, post Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, inflammatory bowel disease, malignancy, virgin abdomen, pregnancy, hernia, and early postoperative state.

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