Volvulus Medical Definition

What is Volvulus?” 

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  • Volvulus

© Mariana Ruiz

Volvulus Medical Definition: Volvulus occurs when a loop of intestine twists around itself and the membrane that attaches it to the abdominal wall causing a bowel obstruction. Symptoms can be extremely painful and sudden. 

They can include: 

  • Abdominal distension
  • Pain
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Bloody stool
  • Fever

In adults, the sigmoid colon and cecum are the most commonly affected by volvulus. In children, the small intestine and stomach are more commonly involved.

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Volvulus in Medical Malpractice Cases

Volvulus is a rare condition, but when it occurs it requires fast action. Delayed diagnosis of volvulus is associated with high mortality rates as the twisted intestine can become tight enough to restrict blood flow. Diagnosis is not known to be particularly difficult, but since volvulus can occur in many different areas of the intestines, the solution and management are not always straight forward making medical malpractice a potentiality. 

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