Signs and Symptoms:
- sudden onset of severe paroxysmal colicky pain
- infant looks normal in between episodes
- this can be accompanied by straining and loud cries
- if this is not reduced the infant will become progressively weak and lethargic
- vomiting may occur early in the course
- blood may start passing within the first 12 hours which is called the currant jelly stool because mucous and blood are intermixed together, but this might not occur in 1-2 days in some cases
The history and physical is usually sufficient to diagnose this entity. Plain abdominal x-ray maybe warranted to show signs of obstruction. Barium enema will show a filling defect resulting from the obstruction.
It is particularly difficult to sometimes differentiate this from gastroenteritis. Meckel's diverticulm is usually painless with bloody stools. The bloody stools from Henoch-Schonlein Purpura usually have joint pains.
This is considered an emergency procedure once diagnosis is certain and if there are no signs of shock or dehydration reduction by using an air enema is thetreatment of choice if not exploratory laparotomy with manual reduction by the surgeon is indicated.