VOLUME 38 - NUMBER 1 - 2017

Supergiant fecaloma as manifestation of chronic constipation

  • Currò G., Lazzara C., Latteri S., Bartolotta M., Navarra G.
  • Letter to the Editor, 53-54
  • Full text PDF

  • Fecaloma is common in patients with damage to the autonomic nervous system in the large bowel associated with Chagas disease (inflammatory and neoplastic) or Hirschprung’s disease, in psychiatric patients and, more commonly, in elderly patients suffering with chronic constipation. Symptoms of fecaloma are usually nonspecific. Clinical examination can give the appearance of an abdominal tumor. Most cases of fecaloma are treated conservatively with digital evacuation and enemas. In severe and unremitting cases, surgery is required to prevent significant complications. Fecaloma should be considered in the differential diagnosis of any patient with history of chronic constipation and abdominal mass. We present the clinical case of an 85-year-old man with a history of chronic constipation presented to the emergency room with vague abdominal pain of 2 days’ duration. An erect abdominal X-ray and computed tomography revealed a supergiant faecaloma extending from the pubis up to the diaphragm associated to a megarectum and megacolon. The patient was treated successfully with digital evacuation and enemas.

  • KEY WORDS: Chronic constipation - Fecaloma - Elderly.