Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1999 Feb;180(2 Pt 1):313-5.

Adhesion-related small-bowel obstruction after gynecologic operations.

Author information

Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Pediatrics, and Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.



Our purpose was to evaluate a possible relationship between adhesion-related small-bowel obstruction and gynecologic operations.


The records of all female patients with the diagnosis of small-bowel obstruction from 1989 to 1996 were studied. The cause of bowel obstruction, the type and technique of previous operations, and whether the parietal peritoneum was closed at the completion of the procedure or was left open were evaluated.


Among 262 women the most common cause of small-bowel obstruction was intra-abdominal adhesions (37.0%). Among 92 women with adhesion-related small-bowel obstruction, 35 women (38%) had undergone a previous abdominal hysterectomy. The incidence of small-bowel obstruction after an abdominal hysterectomy was 16.3 per 1000 hysterectomies. The incidence of small-bowel obstruction after cesarean delivery (5/10,000 cesarean deliveries) was significantly less than after other abdominal operations. Adhesions were found between the small bowel and the pelvis in 14 women (29.8%), and all were in women who had undergone a hysterectomy. In 33 others (70.2%) the adhesions were found between the previous abdominal incision and the intestine. The median interval between the initial operation and the small-bowel obstruction was 5.3 years.


The most common cause of small-bowel obstruction is postsurgical adhesions. Adhesionrelated small-bowel obstruction is commonly found after an abdominal hysterectomy. Bowel obstruction can occur many years after the initial abdominal surgery.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center