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Chronic intestinal psuedo-obstruction and MIDD, a rare cause of acute abdomen: implications in emergency surgery


Chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction (CIPO) is a condition typified by the failure of the small bowel to propel contents in the absence of physical obstruction. CIPO is diagnosed after eliminating other causes, presenting a diagnostic challenge in emergency surgery. We report a case of a 32-year-old man with a rare mitochondrial disorder, Maternally inherited diabetes and deafness (MIDD), who presented to our hospital acutely unwell with peritonitis. Laparotomy revealed distended small bowel with no transition point, and turbid fluid with no macroscopic source. Postoperatively he had severe electrolyte and vitamin deficiencies. The diagnosis of CIPO leading to paralytic ileus and bacterial translocation was established and managed with aggressive electrolyte and vitamin replacement. He was discharged day 12 post operatively after a prolonged ileus with follow-up from a quaternary metabolic unit. We discuss here the challenges and gold standard in the emergency management of CIPO.

  • metabolic disorders
  • gastroenterology
  • gastrointestinal surgery
  • neurogastroenterology

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