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Am Surg. 1996 May;62(5):369-72.

Small bowel obstruction from gastrointestinal histoplasmosis in acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Beth Israel Medical Center, New York, New York, USA.


Disseminated histoplasmosis is a rare condition that is associated with an underlying immune disorder in approximately 25 per cent of patients. It often leads to GI histoplasmosis, but when the disease predominantly affects the GI tract few, if any, pulmonary symptoms appear. Although histoplasmosis of the gastrointestinal system has been described, it rarely causes a small bowel obstruction. In fact, a recent review of the English literature revealed 77 cases of gastrointestinal histoplasmosis, with only none having clinical presentation solely involving of the jejunum and ileum in acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients. At the time of urgent abdominal exploration, both patients had several areas of bowel strictures with subjacent mesenteric adenopathy. They required resection of small bowel segments. Pathology examination established the diagnosis of histoplasmosis, and both patients were discharged home after antifungal therapy.

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