Small bowel feces sign

Case contributed by Dr Bruno Di Muzio

Presentation

Acute abdomen after a history of constipation followed by enema.

Patient Data

Age: 76
Gender: Female
CT

Presence of particulate feculent material mingled with gas bubbles in the lumen of the small intestine. Free abdominal fluid and pneumoperitoneum are also present.

Case Discussion

The small bowel feces sign can be observed on abdominal CT scans. It is a sign of decreased small bowel motility and has been described as a finding indicative of small bowel obstruction (SBO) or another severe small-bowel abnormality (e.g. metabolic or infectious disease). 

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