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Neutropenic colitis: a continuing surgical challenge

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Background Neutropenic colitis is a clinicopathological syndrome characteristically seen as a complication of chemotherapy for haematological malignancy. This review explores the pathogenesis of the condition and appraises the options for management.

Methods A Medline search was carried out and all relevant papers were reviewed.

Results There are many case reports but few published series, so experience is mainly anecdotal. Both medical and surgical management have been successful; it is not possible to compare treatment groups formally.

Conclusion The greater use of aggressive multiagent chemotherapy regimens may increase the frequency with which the condition is encountered. Heightened awareness of neutropenic colitis may prompt diagnosis and a better understanding of the pathophysiology may help guide clinical management.
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Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: Glenfield General Hospital, Groby Road, Leicester LE3 9QP, UK

Publication date: September 1, 1997

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