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Reminder of important clinical lesson
A primary adenocarcinoma of the transverse colon mimicking Crohn’s disease: a case report and literature review


Diarrhoea and weight loss are presenting features of both Crohn’s disease and colorectal cancer; however, the two conditions can usually be distinguished on the basis of characteristic patterns of abnormalities observed at the time of initial blood testing and imaging. In patients with suspected Crohn’s disease these are often considered sufficient grounds to commence empirical treatment before the results of histology are available. This case report describes a 45-year-old man whose initial clinical, endoscopic and radiological investigations were strongly suggestive of a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease, but who subsequently was found to have an adenocarcinoma of the mid-transverse colon. He went on to have an emergency extended right hemi-colectomy.

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