Obliteration of the rectal lumen after stapled hemorrhoidopexy: report of a case, 2008.

Pasquale Giordano
Department of Colorectal Surgery, Whipps Cross University Hospital, London, United Kingdom

We report an incident of complete stapled closure of the rectal lumen following stapled hemorrhoidopexy. A patient with symptomatic prolapsing hemorrhoids underwent a stapled hemorrhoidopexy as a day-case procedure. After application of the pursestring suture and firing of the dedicated stapler the rectal lumen was found to have been completely obliterated. Endoscopic assessment using a flexible sigmoidoscope confirmed the absence of a rectal lumen. The patient was woken up and a gastrograffin enema performed. Contrast was injected under high pressure into the rectal lumen and a small defect in the mid point of the staple line was revealed. A fine guidewire was passed and endoscopic balloon dilatation achieved. This complication could have had catastrophic consequences and potentially required major surgical intervention. Although unlikely to occur, we believe that surgeons should be aware of this possible problem and a radiologic/endoscopic approach should be considered before more aggressive surgical intervention is undertaken.