Small Bowel Obstruction Due to Abdominal Cocoon Syndrome in Post-COVID-19 Patients.

Publication date: Feb 01, 2024

Abdominal cocoon syndrome, also recognized as encapsulating peritoneal sclerosis, is an exceedingly rare medical condition characterized by an anomalous membranous envelopment of the small bowel. Despite its clinical rarity, the precise etiology and pathogenic mechanisms of this syndrome remain elusive. This comprehensive discussion presents a case series encompassing six patients who sought medical attention in the Emergency Room, all sharing a common presentation: severe abdominal distension and persistent constipation. Intriguingly, these symptoms manifested following recent severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infections. Remarkably, none of these patients had significant medical histories or had undergone prior surgical interventions, rendering their cases even more enigmatic. The defining feature across all six cases emerged during exploratory laparotomy, where a consistent finding stunned the surgical team: the discovery of a thick, fibrous membrane enveloping segments of the small bowel. The surgical procedure entailed meticulous dissection and subsequent removal of this membrane, with tissue samples dispatched for histopathological evaluation. This diagnostic approach conclusively confirmed the presence of abdominal cocoon syndrome in each of these patients. The focal point of our discussion revolves around a potential connection between recent severe COVID-19 infection, intensive care unit admissions, and the subsequent development of abdominal cocoon syndrome. This intriguing association compels further inquiry to unveil the precise pathogenesis of this syndrome, particularly within the context of COVID-19. Given the diagnostic complexities associated with abdominal cocoon syndrome, this report underscores the indispensability of maintaining a heightened clinical suspicion and the significance of rigorous intraoperative assessments to ensure timely diagnosis and effective management. Abdominal cocoon syndrome represents a rare and enigmatic medical condition characterized by its uncertain etiology. Our case series tantalizingly suggests a link between recent severe COVID-19 infection and the development of this syndrome. Nevertheless, comprehensive research endeavors are warranted to unravel the intricate mechanisms that underlie this intriguing association. In light of the diagnostic challenges associated with abdominal cocoon syndrome, this report underscores the pivotal role of exploratory surgery, in the absence of definitive radiological imaging, as the cornerstone for both diagnosis and therapeutic intervention. The pursuit of further investigations into the intricate relationship between COVID-19 and abdominal cocoon syndrome may ultimately yield the critical insights needed to demystify this complex medical enigma.

Concepts Keywords
Coronavirus abdominal
Covid cocoon
Radiological covid-19
Rare intestinal
Surgery obstruction

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