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Gastroenterology. 1985 Jul;89(1):102-8.

Gastrointestinal Kaposi's sarcoma in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. Endoscopic and autopsy findings.


Homosexual men with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) have been studied to define the extent of gastrointestinal KS. In 50 patients examined by both upper endoscopy and flexible fiberoptic sigmoidoscopy, 20 (40%) had visible lesions consistent with KS. Ten patients (20%) had upper and lower tract involvement, 6 (12%) patients had upper tract involvement alone, and 4 (8%) had lower tract disease alone. Only 23% of endoscopic biopsies of KS lesions were positive for KS. Gastrointestinal KS was not more frequent in patients with nodal KS (41%) than in patients with skin KS (50%). No clinical sequelae of gastrointestinal KS lesions were seen. Mortality was significantly greater in those patients with endoscopic evidence of gastrointestinal KS. Postmortem examination of 13 men with KS and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome revealed abdominal visceral involvement in 10 patients (77%). Antemortem endoscopic findings correlated with subsequent autopsy data in 5 patients. Our findings suggest that visceral involvement, though rarely symptomatic, may be associated with a poorer prognosis.

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