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Int Surg. 1995 Apr-Jun;80(2):138-40.

Diagnostic approach and management of active lower gastrointestinal hemorrhage.

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2nd Department of Propedeutic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, School of Health Science, University of Athens, Greece.


We evaluated 67 patients with acute bleeding of the lower gastrointestinal tract, for diagnostic accuracy of colonoscopy, and scintigraphy. Fifty-nine patients were stable after initial resuscitation and underwent colonoscopy. The source of hemorrhage was identified in 30 patients (50.8%). Tc-labeled red blood cells scintigram was undergone in 23 patients with a sensitivity of 43.4%. The identification of the bleeding source reached 75.4% when colonoscopy was used in combination with scintigraphy. Eleven patients with lower gastrointestinal bleeding requiring transfusion of 5 units of red blood cells or more had a diagnostic exploratory laparotomy, and the diagnosis was ascertained during operation in nine. The postoperative mortality rate was 18.1%. We conclude that in patients with active gastrointestinal bleeding, colonoscopy in combination with scintigraphy detect at a higher rate the cause and the site of bleeding and possibly improve the prognosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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