Diarrhea pp 141-157 | Cite as

Radiation Enterocolitis

  • Einar G. Lurix
  • Jorge A. Zapatier
  • Andrew Ukleja
Part of the Clinical Gastroenterology book series (CG)


This chapter is focused on review of the diagnostic tests and management of radiation enterocolitis. Radiation enterocolitis can occur after radiation therapy for urological, gynecological, and gastrointestinal cancer. Diarrhea, which is often a dominant symptom, can develop from a few weeks to many years after radiation treatment depending on the severity and the extent of the injury. Radiation enterocolitis can result in severe refractory diarrhea associated with progressive weight loss, abdominal pain, and malnutrition. Diagnosis of radiation enterocolitis can be a challenge. Properly selected radiographic and endoscopic studies allow for detection of subtle changes in the bowel from radiation. A history of prior radiation is a key to make the diagnosis, since other conditions can mimic radiographic, endoscopic, and histologic findings of radiation injury. Management of radiation enterocolitis is directed toward symptoms control. Surgery may be required if conservative measures fail.

Key Words

Diarrhea Radiation enteritis Malabsorption 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Einar G. Lurix
    • 1
  • Jorge A. Zapatier
    • 2
  • Andrew Ukleja
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of GastroenterologyCleveland Clinic FloridaWestonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Internal MedicineCleveland Clinic FloridaWestonUSA
  3. 3.Department of GastroenterologyCleveland Clinic FloridaWestonUSA

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