Use of the Long Tube in the Management of Patients With Small-Intestinal Obstruction due to Adhesions

Philip J. Wolfson, MD; Joel J. Bauer, MD; Irwin M. Gelernt, MD; Isidore Kreel, MD; Arthur H. Aufses Jr, MD
Arch Surg. 1985;120(9):1001-1006. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1985.01390330013002.
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• A retrospective analysis was performed of all patients admitted to our hospital over a six-year period with a diagnosis of small-intestinal obstruction due to adhesions, to assess the efficacy of treatment with long-tube decompression. Of 127 episodes of obstruction, two thirds responded to nonoperative treatment. Factors that were associated with a greater likelihood of success with long-tube decompression included incomplete obstruction, recurrent obstruction, and passage of the tube beyond the pylorus. Clinical findings were relatively reliable as diagnostic indicators of strangulation. The overall mortality was 1.5%, with no deaths due to a delay in operative intervention. A trial of long-tube decompression is recommended in patients presenting with a diagnosis of small-intestinal obstruction due to adhesions in the absence of clinical evidence of strangulation.

(Arch Surg 1985;120:1001-1006)


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