Clinical warning signs of life-threatening hematochezia in neurosurgical patients with long-term bed rest: Three cases report.
Patients with long term bed rest in intensive care unit after neurosurgery could experience splanchnic hypoperfusion. These patients have several other medical conditions that exacerbate splanchnic hypoperfusion during treatment and the splanchnic hypoperfusion could result in 'stress-induced intestinal necrosis', which could cause massive hematochezia. We report here the experience of life-threatening hematochezia in 3 patients who underwent brain surgery in our institution. One female patient (72-year-old) and 2 male patients (58- and 35-year-old) were admitted to our institution because of traumatic intracerebral hemorrhage, subarachnoid hemorrhage due to a ruptured anterior communicating artery, and subarachnoid hemorrhage with unknown cause respectively. All patients underwent emergency brain surgery for diagnosis and treatment. After surgery, they all experienced long-term bed rest in intensive care unit. Hematochezia occurred on postoperative day 15, 17, and 49, respectively. All of the patients were assessed by abdomen/pelvis computed tomography and underwent a colonoscopy. The female patient underwent embolization through pelvic arteriography and epinephrine injection through colonoscopy, but a total colectomy and ileostomy was performed due to refractory hematochezia. 58-year-old male patient had a laparoscopic ileostomy for the bowel rest. The other patient underwent nil per os and conservative treatment for 2 weeks. The female patient was discharged without further treatment plan, 58-year-old male patient survived after laparoscopic ileostomy, while the other patient survived after 2 weeks of nil per os. Abdominal symptoms, such as hematochezia, should be actively managed in neurosurgical patients who are undergoing long-term bed rest in an intensive care unit under physiologically stressful medical conditions.