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Making a Diagnosis

In order to make an intussusception diagnosis, the healthcare provider will ask a number of questions and perform a physical exam, looking for signs and symptoms of intussusception. If the healthcare provider suspects intussusception, he or she will often order additional tests. Some of these tests may include:
  • X-rays
  • Upper and lower gastrointestinal (GI) series
  • CT scan
  • Barium enema.
Intussusception symptoms can be similar to symptoms seen with a number of other medical conditions, including:
  • Colic
  • Volvulus
  • Appendicitis
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Sepsis
  • Incarcerated hernia.
The healthcare provider will consider these conditions and attempt to rule them out before making an intussusception diagnosis.
(Click Intussusception Diagnosis for a closer look at how the condition is diagnosed.)

Treatment Options

Once a diagnosis is made, there are several intussusception treatment options available, including:
  • Barium enema
  • Surgery.
The specific treatment that is recommended will depend on a number of factors, including:
  • The extent of the problem
  • The cause of intussusception
  • The age and general health of the patient.


(For more information, click Intussusception Treatment.) 


Prognosis for Intussusception

With early treatment, the outcome is generally excellent. If intussusception is not diagnosed promptly, especially in children, it can cause serious damage to the portion of the bowel that is unable to get a normal blood supply.
In some cases, usually in children, intussusception may be temporary and reverse on its own. If no underlying cause is found in these cases, no specific treatment is required.

Intussusception Information

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