Intussusception Differential Diagnoses

Updated: Nov 07, 2023
  • Author: A Alfred Chahine, MD; Chief Editor: Carmen Cuffari, MD  more...
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Diagnostic Considerations

In rare circumstances, intussusception presents with prolapse of the intussusceptum through the anus. Such prolapse can be confused with rectal prolapse. Careful examination can differentiate between the 2 presentations, as follows:

  • The anal crypts are everted with rectal prolapse and not with intussusception

  • An examining finger can be passed between the prolapse and the anus in patients with intussusception but not in patients with rectal prolapse

Conditions to consider in the differential diagnosis of intussusception, along with those in the next section, include the following:

  • Milk allergy

  • Incarcerated hernia

  • Internal hernia

  • Other, rare causes of intestinal obstruction

  • Adhesive band

  • Volvulus

  • Meckel diverticulum

  • Any process causing abdominal pain or GI bleeding

Differential Diagnoses