Splenic rupture after uncomplicated colonoscopy.

Sean Sachdev*, Hariharan Thangarajah, Judith Keddington

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Colonoscopy is a commonly performed medical procedure generally considered safe and effective. Rare complications include postpolypectomy bleeding and perforation. A far less common and more unusual complication is splenic injury. We present the case of a patient who developed this very outcome, presenting to the emergency department with abdominal pain several hours after the procedure. The mechanism of such injury is not known but has been hypothesized to be either traction on the splenocolic ligament or previously formed adhesions, direct blunt injury, or special maneuvers used to advance the colonoscope. Patients typically present with severe abdominal pain less than 24 hours after the procedure and may demonstrate Kehr's sign. Computed tomographic imaging is the diagnostic method of choice, and suspicion of splenic injury should necessitate careful observation with potential for operative intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)515.e1-2
JournalThe American journal of emergency medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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