Bowel obstruction is a common clinical problem, and clinical signs and symptoms do not provide sufficient information for diagnosis or to guide management. CT is becoming a mainstay in diagnosing bowel obstruction and differentiating it from ileus, in locating the site of the obstruction, in identifying the transition point, in determining the cause of the obstruction, which may be intraluminal, intrinsic, or extrinsic, and finally in looking for a complication such as closed loop obstruction or ischemia. Multidetector row CT scanners permit high-quality reformatted series and particularly coronal reformatting useful in the identification of the transition point and in the analysis of the cause and of the mechanism of the obstruction. Because the management of obstruction has dramatically changed with a decrease in the proportion of patients who need surgery, of the time of surgery, which may be delayed, and of the type of surgery, with sometimes a coelioscopic procedure, a precise CT evaluation is now both the gold standard and the common approach in patients with suspected bowel obstruction.
KeywordsBowel Wall Small Bowel Obstruction Internal Hernia Ischemic Colitis Colonic Obstruction
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