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Chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction: treatment and long term follow up of 44 patients
  1. S Heneyke,
  2. V V Smith,
  3. L Spitz,
  4. P J Milla
  1. Institute of Child Health and Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust, London, UK
  1. Dr P J Milla, Gastroenterology Unit, Institute of Child Health, 30 Guilford Street, London WC1N 1EH, UK. email:P.Milla{at}


AIMS To document the long term course of chronic idiopathic intestinal pseudo-obstruction syndrome (CIIPS) in children with defined enteric neuromuscular disease, and the place and type of surgery used in their management; in addition, to identify prognostic factors.

METHODS Children with CIIPS were investigated and treated prospectively.

RESULTS Twenty four children presented congenitally, eight during the 1st year of life, and 10 later. Twenty two had myopathy and 16 neuropathy (11 familial). Malrotation was present in 16 patients, 10 had short small intestine, six had non-hypertrophic pyloric stenosis, and 16 had urinary tract involvement. Thirty two patients needed long term parenteral nutrition (TPN): for less than six months in 19 and for more than six months in 13, 10 of whom are TPN dependent; 14 are now enteral feeding. Prokinetic treatment improved six of 22. Intestinal decompression stomas were used in 36, colostomy relieved symptoms in five of 11, and ileostomy in 16 of 31. A poor outcome (death (14) or TPN dependence (10)) was seen with malrotation (13 of 16), short small bowel (eight of nine), urinary tract involvement (12 of 16), and myopathic histology (15 of 22).

CONCLUSIONS In CIIPS drugs are not helpful but decompression stomas are. Outcome was poor in 24 of 44 children (15 muscle disorder, 10 nerve disease).

  • Chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction requires coordinated investigation by physician, surgeon, and pathologist

  • Manometry and histopathological diagnosis provide prognostic information

  • Decompression stomas provide treatment, allow diagnosis, and may prevent unnecessary further surgery

  • Long term total parenteral nutrition may be required

  • chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction
  • decompression stomas
  • prognostic factors
  • total parenteral nutrition

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