Volvulus : A painful intestinal disorder

Last Updated on November 23, 2022 by Dr. Saqib Mueed

Volvulus is a condition in which the intestinal loop twist around itself which leads to consequences in bowel hindrance. Sings comprise wounded stool vomiting abdominal bloat pain in the belly.

These conditions may be gradual or rapid. Sometimes the blood flow to the part of the intestine may cut off which causes ischemic bowel. In those conditions, the patient may have a fever or feel pain while touching the belly.

The factors which are involved in the happing of volvulus commonly birth fault which we teamed as intestinal malrotation. secondly, if a person has a diet full of fibers increases the chances of that condition. [1]Volvulus – Wikipedia [2]Volvulus – StatPearls – NCBI Bookshelf (nih.gov)

Symptoms of Volvulus

The symptom of volvulus has sudden and severe so patients are in urgent situations for prompt evaluation.

These are the following symptoms of this disease  

The newborn children or infants having volvulus can have additional signs for that which may be

  • Illustration in legs as if in soreness
  • Laziness in child
  • High rate of heart beating and increase in breath

Causes of volvulus

In the fetus, the volvulus of the small intestine may be caused by malrotation. Malrotation is a condition or a wrong placement of the intestine in the belly region or it is settled in the wrong way in the abdomen cavity.

This wrong replacement becomes the cause of the blocking of the intestine by the means of twisting in the abdominal cavity. This also blocks the blood vessels and also causes constipation.

In mature humans causes of volvulus are

  • Long colon part of the intestine
  • Abdominal adhesions appear after operation off belly injury or infections causes volvulus
  • Maybe due to disorders of the large intestine like Hirschsprung’s disease
  • Due to the part of the colon that is not attached by the wall of the abdominal cavity
  • Constipation
  • Can happen due to pregnancy
  • The people over 60 age [4]doi:10.1016/j.giec.2006.01.010 (cbc.org.br) 

Types of volvulus

There are different kinds of volvulus based on intestinal curl which are following

  • Neonatorum volvulus
  • Small intestine volvulus
  • Volvulus of midgut intestine
  • Volvulus of caecum also called as cecal volvulus
  • Sigmoid volvulus
  • Oblique colon volvulus
  • Splenic flexure volvulus also called the rarest
  • Gastric volvulus
  • Ileostomies volvulus

Gastric volvulus

It occurs when the stomach of the patient make a curl at 180 degrees and curl around the mesentery and form a bowel-like barrier in the abdominal cavity the patient has gastric volvulus.

Mesenteric axial volvulus

It refers to results more commonly in children as contrasting to mature. The rotation of the stomach. The treatment of this condition may lead to  laparotomy, insertion of gastrostomy percutaneous pipe and  applicable in hernia and diaphragmatic spoil patch

Volvulus of midgut  

This is the most common in children and 9/10 happens in the first year of development. This happened in the developmental stage and causes vomiting condition in a patient. This results in belly tender and which is due to the liquid present in the lumen of the intestine and this condition is responsible for body shocks and body instability.

Cecal volvulus

This condition is seen in about 3-6 years old and is lesser than all other volvulus in frequency. This condition is associated with different factors that lack thorough peritoneal fascination and fulcrums of abdominal loads and adhesions.

Patients having this condition have bloated abdomens in totaling vomiting and belly pain. Patients having this may have cecum twisted and some patients have the inverted condition of the cecum part of the intestine. The treatment of this condition may involve laparotomy. 

Sigmoidal volvulus 

Sigmoidal volvulus accounts for nearly 60% of this disorder having the large bowel.

Its patients over and over again have abdominal bloating constipation and nausea that may be or may not be accompanied by vomiting.

It is considered to be associated with neurological pathologies for example numerous sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.

Diagnosis of volvulus

On-time diagnosis of disorder can lead to successful treatment.

Different types of tests can prove helpful in diagnosis in volvulus these are as follows.

  • Tests of a blood
  • Test for scrutinizing blood stool
  • Use of Barium X-rays for superior and inferior belly tract
  • Checking of belly abnormalities with the help of a Computed tomography scan

Treatment of volvulus

On-time treatment should be done to have a healthy life. While treating the volvulus the doctor will cut the abdominal area where the loped intestine is near to the abdominal wall. The doctor will take out the damaged intestine and make sure that the blood will pass through easily to reduce complications.

Sometimes the oxygenated blood did not move through that part of the intestine and may cause the death of cell proteins and many different parts of that intestine.

The absence of oxygen kills the cells and proteins soo while treating the doctor also has to cut the intestine to make sure the body part will be done proper functions and the damage part will no longer be a part of the body which can make complications.

The best way is to remove this part of the appendix to reduce the complication that happened due to the appendix problem. There should be a proper checkup and routine meat up with the doctor to make sure the treatment of volvulus at right time.

The treatment for this condition may involve a sigmoidoscopy if mucous of sigmoid  appear normal and looked pink in color a rectal pipe or any liquor electrolyte cardiac may have kidney abnormalities that should be correct  then the patient has to do operate of this or if it is not operated this may lead to high complication. [5]772.full.pdf (bmj.com)

Complications caused by volvulus

As soon as possible treatment should be done to lessen complication caused due to this disorder

some complications in volvulus can be included are given as follows

  • Harsh infections of blood can also cause complications in volvulus and damage the abdominal cavity as well as the intestine of the abdominal cavity
  • There is another type of volvulus that has small bowel of the intestine which is due to the lack in the small intestine and the formation of small bowel syndrome may be raftered as malabsorption. [6]https://www.mdpi.com/2227-9067/8/11/982/pdf

Precisions about Volvulus

  • Precisions must be done to prevent these conditions which include routine check-ups.
  • Do not eat fiber-containing chow.
  • Get treatment for continuous constipation

Reviewed by:
Dr. Shafaat Yar Khan  (Ph.D.) 
Medical University of Vienna, Austria 
Present: University of Sargodha, Pakistan

Our reviewers’ details, Click Here

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