Endoscopy 2013; 45(S 02): E57-E58
DOI: 10.1055/s-0032-1325973
Cases and Techniques Library (CTL)
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Endoscopic needle-knife treatment of refractory ileo–ascending anastomotic stricture

M. Kerkhof
Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Erasmus MC University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
,
P. Dewint
Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Erasmus MC University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
,
A. D. Koch
Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Erasmus MC University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
,
C. J. van der Woude
Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Erasmus MC University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
22 March 2013 (online)

A 45-year-old man with Crohn’s disease diagnosed in 1988 who had undergone an ileocecal resection with an end-to-side anastomosis in 1995 presented with pain in the right lower abdomen. A colonoscopy was performed using an Olympus colonoscope (Tokyo, Japan), during which a noninflamed fibrotic stricture of the anastomosis that could not be passed by the endoscope was found ([Fig. 1]). Because the patient refused surgery, six balloon dilations of the stricture were performed at 3-monthly intervals. Unfortunately these resulted in limited improvement in both the degree of stenosis and the patient’s symptoms.

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Fig. 1 Appearances during colonoscopies performed in a patient with Crohn’s disease showing the ileo–ascending anastomotic stricture: a before balloon dilation; b during balloon dilation; c 3 months after balloon dilation.

In order to overcome the stricture, it was decided to incise the fibrotic bridge with a needle-knife papillotome (Zimmon needle-knife papillotome; Cook Medical Europe, Limerick, Ireland; [Fig. 2]). It was possible to make this incision safely because of a perfect view of the tissue bridge, the enteral loop, and the colonic loop in a parallel position. After the incision had been made, the endoscope was able to be passed beyond the anastomosis. Normal ileal mucosa was seen immediately beyond the anastomosis. At follow-up colonoscopy 3 months later, it was still possible to pass the endoscope beyond the anastomosis. During 7 months of follow-up, the patient has remained symptom free.

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Fig. 2 Colonoscopic appearance showing the ileo–ascending anastomotic stricture: a before needle-knife incision; b during needle-knife incision; c after needle-knife incision.

Fibrotic strictures of the ileo–ascending anastomosis are common complications of Crohn’s disease after ileocecal resection [1]. Drug treatment is ineffective in the absence of active inflammation. To minimize the need for multiple resections, bowel-conserving strategies that include surgical stricturoplasty and endoscopic balloon dilation have been developed. The long-term success rate of endoscopic dilations is high (80 %) [2].

Only a few case series of endoscopic needle-knife incision have been published. These include needle-knife incision of upper gastrointestinal anastomotic strictures [3], anastomotic sinuses [4], and rectal anastomotic strictures [5]. To our knowledge, we present the first case of a successful needle-knife incision of an ileo–ascending anastomotic stricture in a patient with Crohn’s disease. Balloon dilation can sometimes be ineffective, especially in very rigid fibrotic strictures, and in these cases needle-knife incision might provide an alternative treatment to balloon dilation.

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