Intestinal duplication. A diagnostic and therapeutic challenge.

M Soares-Oliveira, J L Carvalho, M Campos, M Andrade, J Estevão-Costa


Duplications of the alimentary tract are rare congenital anomalies. The symptoms often mimic other surgical diseases and the diagnostic workup presents low accuracy. The charts of twelve children with intestinal duplications were reviewed. Their ages ranged from 13 days to 12 years (median: 12 months). The majority of the cases were located at ileum (n = 9). These children presented: rectal bleeding (n = 4), intussusception (n = 3), intestinal obstruction (n = 1) and hemoperitoneum (n = 1). All that were symptomatic before 1 year of age presented with intussusception (n = 3/3). All, except one colonic case was cystic. 99mTc abdominal scan was positive in 3 cases presenting rectal bleeding. One child with gastric duplication was diagnosed prenatally. Treatment consisted of enterectomy in all but one case, with no complications. Experience in the diagnostic workup and management is important to achieve a low morbidity rate in this congenital anomaly, which may present delayed manifestations.

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