Ischemic colitis of the intestine - symptoms and treatment in the elderly

Inflammatory processes in the large intestine and its partial damage caused by impaired blood circulation lead to a narrowing of the blood vessels. This phenomenon prevents the full enrichment of cells with oxygen, resulting in ischemic colitis. In most cases, the lack of blood circulation is observed in the area of ​​splenic curvature, but it can have a damaging effect on any part of the intestine. Insufficient blood, caused by a violation of blood circulation, leads to a breakdown in the structure of the intestine and the functions performed by it, which requires immediate treatment. Ischemic colitis is a common disease that predominates in older people, but young patients also develop this disease. During the development of ischemic colitis, microorganisms are formed in the intestine, which is one of the causes of significant inflammation and irritation of the large intestine.

It is not always possible to accurately diagnose this disease, since the symptoms of ischemic colitis may be similar to other diseases of the digestive tract.

Symptoms of ischemic colitis

Characteristic signs of the development of this type of inflammation are:

  • bloating in the abdomen;
  • attacks of diarrhea;
  • vomiting;
  • frequent cramping pain in the abdomen;
  • bleeding;
  • headache and dizziness;
  • increased sweating;
  • restless sleep or lack of sleep;
  • significant weight loss, caused by a violation of digestive processes in the body.

One of the main symptoms of ischemic colitis is abdominal pain after each meal lasting for 2-3 hours. Basically, pain sensations are observed in the left region, but everything depends on the place where the lesion occurred. Pain can have a different character - last for a long period of time, or be paroxysmal. Some products should be avoided, as they cause an exacerbation of the manifestations, namely hot, spicy, cold food, as well as dairy products.

In severe cases of ischemic colitis, when mesenteric artery occluded, gangrene is formed. The first sign of its appearance is left-sided acute pain in the abdomen, bleeding, intestinal obstruction and the occurrence of peritonitis. In this case, the palpation of the abdominal area is very painful, the muscles are strained. If the patient suffers from severe cardiovascular diseases, which is most common in the elderly, the resulting gangrene can cause death. Therefore, timely diagnosed ischemic colitis in an elderly patient and timely treatment can prevent the development of gangrene.

Causes of ischemic colitis

Usually, narrowing of the mesenteric artery is a sign of atherosclerotic lesion. Ischemic colitis of the intestine is more common in the elderly at the age of 60-65 years. But the reasons for the occurrence are too many, so we can distinguish the following:

  • formation of blood clots in the vessels - thromboses;
  • decreased blood circulation;
  • use of certain medications, for example, hormonal, antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs;
  • liver transplant;
  • difficult passage of the contents of the intestine - it can be caused by a hernia or scar tissue, as well as a tumor;
  • neoplasm.

Diagnosis and treatment of ischemic colitis

To provide the patient with the correct specialized treatment, it is necessary to conduct a complete diagnosis of the condition. The doctor should analyze the patient's complaints and find out what symptoms of ischemic colitis he is experiencing, when the first pains in the abdomen, the abundance of blood discharge, the stool is broken.

It is necessary to assess the general condition of the patient, measure body temperature and pressure. To identify and eliminate a possible anemia, a general blood test is performed, its clotting system is examined, as well as the atherogenic index and the lipid spectrum of blood serum. It is important to do an analysis of stool to determine the admixture of blood, clearly indicating the disturbed processes of the digestive system.

Radiological and endoscopic methods help to diagnose correctly. Thus, in the pictures of the abdominal area, all disorders will be visible, including the expansion of the intestine, the presence of fluid. With the help of contrast enema, it is possible to detect pathological changes caused by ischemic colitis.

In ischemic colitis, it is important to make an electrocardiogram to observe the work of the heart muscle. To assess the internal state of the walls of the intestine it is necessary to perform a colonoscopy with the help of an endoscope. Taking a biopsy will help to conduct further analysis and choose the appropriate treatment.

At the first stage of treatment of ischemic colitis, it is necessary to strictly adhere to a certain diet in order to get rid of the symptoms of the disease. To do this, you must refuse to eat fried, salty, sharp foods, reduce the consumption of animal fats, preferring vegetable. This is especially important when treating ischemic colitis in elderly patients.

The patient is allowed to use the following products:

  • wheat and rye bread;
  • various porridges;
  • fruits, berries, but too sour to use it is not necessary;
  • boiled vegetables, greens;
  • fruit juices, compotes, tea, loose coffee with milk;
  • vegetable broth;
  • low-fat cheese and low-fat cottage cheese.

Categorically prohibited products such as:

  • mustard, pepper and other spicy seasonings and spices;
  • buns;
  • fatty meat and fish;
  • alcoholic beverages;
  • chocolate and cream confectionery;
  • meat and mushroom broth.

Also in the treatment of ischemic colitis should take vasodilator drugs and anti-aggregate drugs to reduce the viscosity of the blood.

The initial stage of treatment requires a reduction in heart failure, especially in elderly patients. The development of the infectious process in ischemic colitis can be prevented with the help of a course of antibiotics and reduce the number of manifestations of the disease.

In elderly people the probability of development of ischemic colitis is high, because the main symptom for them is atherosclerosis, therefore, it is necessary to carry out preventive procedures. You need to adjust your diet and monitor your heart health.

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