Colon cut-off sign

Last revised by Raymond Chieng on 27 Dec 2022

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 1,3.

Differential diagnosis

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

See also

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: radiograph
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  • Case 1: CT
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