Meckel’s diverticulum

A common problem, present at birth, in which a small, hollow, wide-mouthed sac protrudes from the ileum. Symptoms only occur when the diverticulum becomes infected, obstructed, or ulcerated. The most common symptom is painless bleeding, which may be sudden and severe, making immediate blood transfusion necessary. Inflammation may cause symptoms very similar to those of acute appendicitis. Meckel’s diverticulum occasionally causes intussusception or volvulus of the small intestine. Diagnosis of Meckel’s diverticulum may be made by using technetium radionuclide scanning. If complications occur, they are treated by surgical removal of the diverticulum.


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