[Skip to Navigation]
October 1974

Intussusception as a Complication of Malignant Neoplasm

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Roswell Park Memorial Institute, New York State Department of Health, State University of New York at Buffalo.

Arch Surg. 1974;109(4):515-518. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1974.01360040037009

Fifteen patients had intussusception associated with malignant neoplasm. In 11 of them, metastatic tumor led the intussusception. With metastatic tumors, symptoms were usually shorter than those encountered with benign disease or with primary malignant neoplasm. The triad of abdominal cramps, nausea with vomiting, and abdominal distention, although not diagnostic, appeared most consistently. A palpable abdominal mass or melena was uncommon. The clinical picture was insidious and often confused by the effects of radiotherapy or chemotherapy. Abdominal roentgenograms and a roentgenographic series of the gastrointestinal tract usually indicated intestinal obstruction. The diagnosis of intussusception was rarely made preoperatively. Despite the generally poor prognosis of patients with metastatic disease, surgical intervention is indicated when intussusception occurs.