Colon cut-off sign

The colon cut-off sign describes gaseous distension seen in the proximal colon associated with abrupt termination of gas within the colon usually at the level of the splenic flexure and decompression of the more distal part of the colon. Though originally described in abdominal radiographs, this sign has also been demonstrated on contrast enemas and computed tomography 1.

Differential diagnosis

The colon cut-off sign can be seen in pathologies of the left upper abdomen:

See also

Article information

rID: 19480
Section: Signs
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Cutoff sign (colon)
  • Colonic cut-off sign
  • Colon cutoff sign

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Cases and figures

  • Case 1: radiograph
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 1: CT
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

     Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

     Thank you for updating your details.