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Am Surg. 2015 Nov;81(11):1187-94.

Acute Genital Edema during Peritoneal Dialysis: A Review for Surgeons.

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Department of Surgery, Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center, Bronx, New York, USA.


Acute genital edema (AGE) is an infrequent but disruptive complication in patients on continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis. It is a common manifestation of dialysate leakage caused by inguinal, umbilical, femoral, or incisional hernias; peritoneal tears; leaks around the dialysis catheter; trauma; fluid overload; and malignancy. The evaluation of AGE begins with a history and physical exam. However, the physical exam in these patients is often indeterminate. Several diagnostic measures exist to evaluate and guide management of AGE occurring during continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis but little agreement exists on an optimum method. We have conducted a review of the literature on the evaluation and management of AGE and present a summary of the data. CT peritoneography and peritoneal scintigraphy have been used extensively to evaluate AGE although no comparative studies exist. MRI peritoneography has also been described. CT peritoneography offers more anatomical detail but may not be as sensitive as peritoneal scintigraphy in detecting a peritoneal fluid leak as the cause for AGE. CT is also more costly and subjects the patient to more radiation. MRI is a noncontrast study without radiation risk, but has not been studied to the same degree. If testing is equivocal or bilateral hernias are suspected, diagnostic laparoscopy is helpful and can be combined with hernia repair. Whether the etiology is a leak or tear, low-volume peritoneal dialysis (PD) or cessation of PD for two to four weeks will allow closure. However, hernias almost always require operative repair with mesh usually without disrupting PD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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