Crescent in a doughnut sign (intestinal intussusception)

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 27 Apr 2020

The crescent in a doughnut sign refers to the transverse ultrasound appearance of intestinal intussusception, and is a variation of the target sign (which is also known as the doughnut sign)

The doughnut is formed by concentric alternating echogenic and hypoechogenic bands. The echogenic bands are formed by mucosa and muscularis whereas the submucosa is responsible for the hypoechoic bands.

The crescent is formed by mesentery which is dragged into the intussusception. It is naturally located only on one side of the bowel and therefore forms a crescent which is echogenic.  

It is thus the transverse equivalent of the pseudokidney sign.

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: photograph: moon crescent
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Figure 2: photograph: ring doughnuts
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

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

     Thank you for updating your details.