Acute Lower Gastrointestinal Bleeding: Characteristics and Clinical Outcome of Patients Treated With an Intensive Protocol

Georgia Diamantopoulou, Christos Konstantakis, Anastasia KottorÎżu, Georgios Skroubis, Georgios Theocharis, Vasileios Theopistos, Christos Triantos, Vasiliki Nikolopoulou, Konstantinos Thomopoulos


Background: In recent years major advances have been made in the management of patients with acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding. The aim of this study was to investigate the characteristics and clinical outcome of patients with acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding (ALGIB) treated with an intensive protocol.

Methods: We analyzed the medical records of 528 patients with ALGIB. All patients after hemodynamic stabilization underwent colonoscopy during the first 24 h of hospitalization and capsule enteroscopy when needed. Patients with massive ongoing bleeding underwent computed tomography angiography (CTA), and when active bleeding was detected embolization was immediately performed.

Results: The mean age of the patients was 70.2 14.6 years and 271 (51.3%) of them were men. At least one comorbidity was present in 464 patients (87.9%), cardiovascular disease in 266 (50.4%), while 158 (30%) patients were on antiplatelet drugs and 96 (18.2%) on anticoagulants. The most common causes of bleeding were diverticulosis (19.7%) and ischemic colitis (19.3%). Thirty-six patients (6.9%) had small intestinal bleeding. In 117 patients (22.2%) active bleeding or recent bleeding stigmata were found and in 82 of them (92.1%) endoscopic hemostasis was applied. Embolization was performed in 10 (1.9%) and was successful in seven (70%) cases, while surgical hemostasis was required in only six (1.1%) cases. Forty-four (8.3%) patients had a rebleeding episode, and 13 patients died with an overall mortality of 2.5%.

Conclusions: Management of ALGIB based on an intensive protocol is safe and effective. The bleeding source can be identified in most cases with a favorable outcome.

Gastroenterol Res. 2017;10(6):352-358


Acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding; Colonoscopy; Endoscopic therapy; Capsule endoscopy; Outcome

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