Colonoscopic Hydrostatic Balloon Dilatation of Crohn's Strictures


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Abstract

Recurrent strictures cause considerable morbidity among many patients with Crohn's disease. We present a retrospective review of the outcome of patients who underwent endoscopic hydrostatic balloon dilatation of Crohn's strictures in our hospital over the past 7 years. All patients were under observation at Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge. An initial assessment of all strictures was made radiologically, and any patient with active disease was treated before consideration of endoscopic dilatation. Dilatation was carried out with Microvasive Rigiflex balloons. Outcome after dilatation was assessed by review at subsequent clinic visits. Sixteen of 22 patients had resolution of their obstructive symptoms after dilatation, although one third of patients required more than two dilatations over the follow-up period. Six of 22 patients had persisting symptoms after endoscopic treatment, requiring surgery. There were no complications noted after any of the 71 dilatations that were performed. We conclude that hydrostatic balloon dilatation is a safe and effective alternative to surgery in the management of Crohn's strictures within the reach of the colonoscope.

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