The final category involves traumatic bowel erosions. When the entire colon is affected, toxic megacolon may result. Patients with NE present with fever in most cases, right lower quadrant pain in 13% to 92%
of cases,39,52–54 diarrhea in 38% to 94%,52,53 nausea and vomiting in 27% to 75%.49,53,54 They may be tachycardic, tachypneic, and diaphoretic Bortezomib cost with signs of dehydration and sepsis. According to a retrospective analysis, malabsorption of D-xylose, as a measure of the functional integrity of the mucosa, is an independent predictor of NE as it correlates with the risk of invasive infection independent of the degree of myelosuppression.55 It also correlates with the type of induction therapy. Gross bleeding occurs in 36% to 65% of patients35,52 due to the combination of mucosal damage and thrombocytopenia. Septicemia may occur in 73% of patients with about half of these cases being polymicrobial.49 Occasionally, NE may present with sepsis alone, without any GI symptoms.56 Physical findings include a right-lower-quadrant mass or fullness,38 abdominal distension in 50% to 58% of patients,53,54 and diffuse tenderness in 63%.53 The absolute Palbociclib neutrophil count is uniformly low with a median duration before diagnosis of 32 days57 and a median neutrophil count of 200.36 Gram-negative bacteria are the most frequently
indentified pathogens.36,48 There may be an increase in total bilirubin, primarily the direct fraction, of unclear significance.38 Plain films are abnormal in 50% to 100% of cases39,58 with a lack of bowel gas in the right lower quadrant and distension of the small bowel. Also seen may be a right lower quadrant soft tissue mass representing fluid-filled, atonic, dilated cecum and ascending colon,59 occasionally progressing out to bowel obstruction.40,60 Ultrasound is a modality often preferred by pediatricians since
it is convenient, inexpensive, avoids ionizing radiation, and does not involve contrast.37 It will show homogeneous echogenic thickening of the bowel wall or the target sign in 79% of evaluated patients.36,61,62 The degree of bowel wall thickening detected by ultrasonography correlated with the need for surgery, the duration of diarrhea,36 and the outcome of patients: 60% of patients with mural thickness greater than 10 mm die from this complication.63 CT scan, the modality preferred by many physicians, may show non-specific ileus, diffuse bowel wall thickening, phlegmon, extraluminal collections, mesenteric stranding, pericecal inflammation, or pneumatosis intestinalis.64–66 The thickened cecum is usually isodense compared to surrounding normal bowel but may have hypodense areas presumably from edema, hemorrhage, or necrosis.