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Papers of the Week

2019 Aug 07




Weight Loss: A Significant Cue To The Diagnosis of Chronic Mesenteric Ischemia.


Bakhtiar A, Yousphi AS, Ghani AR, Ali Z, Ullah W
Cureus. 2019 Aug 07; 11(8):e5335.
PMID: 31598442.


Chronic mesenteric ischemia (CMI) is a condition defined by a state of attenuated blood circulation in the mesenteric vasculature affecting one or more abdominal viscera, and is more common in the female and elderly populations. Amongst the many causes, it occurs most frequently in connection with diffuse atherosclerosis. Its presentation is variable with symptoms such as weight loss, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and/or constipation, with postprandial pain classically present in the majority of the cases; this, in addition to the chronic course of the disease, makes timely diagnosis a challenge. Physical examination may reveal signs of malnutrition and other findings usually linked with the underlying medical condition. It can have grave consequences if not managed promptly. In our case, an 81-year-old woman came in with loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and/or constipation, and weight loss. Computed tomography angiography (CTA) of the abdomen/pelvis confirmed chronic occlusion of the mesenteric vessels. She was treated surgically. This discussion is based on chronic mesenteric ischemia and its nonspecific symptomatology, particularly its association with weight loss.