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December 1959

Intracolonic Transillumination: An Aid to the Surgeon in Localizing Polypoid Tumors of the Colon at Laparotomy

Author Affiliations

Milwaukee; Cincinnati
From Marquette University Medical School and Milwaukee County General Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1959;79(6):915-916. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1959.04320120057006

A patient usually submits to transabdominal polypectomy because of a roentgenologic diagnosis of a polypoid lesion of the colon which is above the reach of the sigmoidoscope or, for some reason, cannot be satisfactorily handled through the instrument. Not infrequently the surgeon is frustrated at laparotomy by his inability to localize the lesion by palpation of the colon. The smaller and/or softer polypoid tumors are more difficult to feel. Lesions less than 1 cm. in diameter seldom can be felt, while lesions 1 cm. or more in diameter usually can be felt provided they have a relatively firm consistency. Lesions up to 2 cm. or more in diameter may be missed if their consistency is relatively soft.

Colotomy with colonoscopy is a direct method of visualizing polypoid lesions regardless of their size or consistency. However, the use of this procedure is not as yet a common practice in the general

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