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Splenic Injury During Colonoscopy-a Complication that Warrants Urgent Attention.

12:02 EDT 16th April 2014 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Splenic Injury During Colonoscopy-a Complication that Warrants Urgent Attention."

Colonoscopy is a safe procedure that is performed routinely worldwide. There is, however, a small but significant risk of splenic injury that is often under-recognized. Due to a lack of awareness about this injury, the diagnosis may be delayed, which can lead to an increased risk of morbidity as well as mortality. This paper presents a comprehensive review of the medical literature on colonoscopy-associated splenic injury and describes the clinical presentation and management of this rare but potentially life-threatening complication. MATERIALS AND
A comprehensive literature search identified 102 patients worldwide, including patients from our experience, with splenic injury during colonoscopy. A meta-regression analysis was completed using a mixed generalized linear model for repeated measures to identify risk factors for this rare complication.
A total of 75 articles were identified and 102 patients were studied. The majority of the papers were in English (92 %). Only 23.4 % of patients (26/102) were reported prior to the year 2000. Among the patients reported after the year 2000, the majority (84.2 %, 64/76) were reported after 2005. There were more females (76.5 %), median age was 65 years (range, 29-90 years), and most of the colonoscopies were performed without difficulty (66.6 %). Nearly 67 % of patients presented within 24 h of colonoscopy with complaints ranging from abdominal pain to dizziness. The most common symptom was left upper quadrant pain (58 %), and CT scan was found to be the most sensitive tool for diagnosis. Seventy-three patients underwent operative intervention; 96 % of these were treated with splenectomy. Hemoglobin drop of more than 3 gm/dL was identified as the only significant predictor of operative intervention. The overall mortality rate was 5 %.
Splenic injury during colonoscopy is rare; however, it is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Splenic injury warrants a high degree of clinical suspicion critical to prompt diagnosis, and early surgical consultation is warranted.


Department of Surgery, Temple University Hospital, 3401 N. Broad Street, 4th Floor Parkinson Pavilion, Philadelphia, PA, USA,

Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Journal of gastrointestinal surgery : official journal of the Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract
ISSN: 1873-4626


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