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Endometriosis masquerading as Crohn's disease in a patient with acute small bowel obstruction
  1. Chaonan Dong1,
  2. Wee Sing Ngu2,
  3. Simon E Wakefield3
  1. 1South Tees NHS Trust, Stainton, UK
  2. 2South Tees NHS Trust, Middlesbrough, UK
  3. 3Department of Colorectal Surgery, James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Chaonan Dong, chaonan.dong{at}


A 45-year-old woman, a smoker, presented acutely with subacute small bowel obstruction. Abdominal CT scan showed features of ileocaecal Crohn's disease. She was treated with high dose steroids and her symptoms rapidly settled. A few days later she was discharged on a reducing steroid course in addition to azathioprine. Outpatient colonoscopy was performed and reported as normal but there was failed terminal ileal intubation. Three months later, she represented as an emergency with complete small bowel obstruction. On laparoscopy, a terminal ileal stricture was found resulting in an ileocolic resection. Histopathology reported an endometriotic stricture with no evidence of Crohn's disease. She was advised to stop steroids and azathioprine. A subsequent pelvic MRI scan showed no further endometrial deposits and she remained symptom free. This case highlights that endometriosis should always be considered when women of childbearing age present with bowel obstruction, even if the patient has no other evidence of the disease.

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