Rectal Perforation, Retropneumoperitoneum, and Pneumomediastinum After Stapling Procedure for Prolapsed Hemorrhoids: Report of a Case and Subsequent Considerations

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Abstract

Stapling procedure is a new technique for the surgical management of third-degree hemorrhoids. Even if long-term experience has not been reported, this new technique is generating a lot of interest and its use is becoming more common in Europe. Some articles have just been published about severe adverse effects of this operation, and in the present article we describe a case of a life-threatening complication that occurred with the use of the stapling technique for hemorrhoidectomy. A patient with perineal descensus and third-degree hemorrhoids underwent a stapling procedure for the treatment of hemorrhoids. Retropneumoperitoneum and pneumomediastinum developed on postoperative Day 2 and a colostomy was performed, allowing a quick recovery of the patient. After six months the colostomy was closed and bowel function restored. Our experience, taken together with some other cases previously published of severe complications after such an operation, suggests caution in the use of this new technique for the treatment of a benign disease.

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