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August 7, 1981

Intestinal Obstruction From Pneumatosis Cystoides Intestinalis

Author Affiliations

Rearing Spring, Pa

JAMA. 1981;246(6):622. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03320060026010

To the Editor.—  Pneumatosis cystoides intestinalis (PCI) is a rare, seldom recognized disorder characterized by several intramural pockets of gas involving any portion of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Pneumatosis cystoides intestinalis is also known as peritoneal pneumatosis and intestinal emphysema. Its etiology and pathogenesis are not known. However, frequent association with respiratory ailments has been described. We describe a patient with PCI with associated Hodgkin's disease who had radiological evidence of intestinal obstruction.

Report of a Case.—  A 57-year-old man had a two-week history of progressive dilation of the small bowel and near complete intestinal obstruction of the jejunum. This was initially attributed to a large internal hernia. His past medical history was relevant on three counts: First, his condition had been diagnosed as duodenal ulcer disease 18 months earlier. Second, he had received radiotherapy to the right side of his neck for Hodgkin's disease in 1963, and apparently he