INTRODUCTION: Intestinal pseudo-obstruction is characterized by impaired transit and luminal dilation in the absence of mechanical obstruction. Our study aims to describe the clinical, radiographic, and physiological findings in pseudo-obstruction associated with systemic sclerosis (SSc), amyloidosis, and paraneoplastic syndrome. METHODS: A retrospective cohort of patients evaluated at our institution between January 1, 2008, and August 1, 2018, was assembled. Clinical, imaging, and physiological characteristics were abstracted from electronic medical records. RESULTS: We identified 100 cases of pseudo-obstruction (55 SSc, 27 amyloidosis, and 18 paraneoplastic). Female population predominance was seen in SSc (71%) vs male population in amyloidosis (74%). Most common symptom was abdominal bloating in all 3 groups. Vomiting was more common in SSc than amyloidosis (73% vs 46%, P = 0.02). Diarrhea was more common in amyloidosis and SSc compared with paraneoplastic (81% and 67% vs 28%, P < 0.01). Weight loss (>5%) was more common in SSc compared with amyloidosis and paraneoplastic (78% vs 31% and 17%, P < 0.0001). Only small bowel dilation was seen in 79%, 40%, and 44% and only large bowel dilation in 2%, 44%, and 44% of patients in SSc, amyloidosis, and paraneoplastic, respectively. Five of 8 SSc patients had myopathic and 3 of 5 paraneoplastic had neuropathic involvement on gastroduodenal manometry. DISCUSSION: SSc-associated pseudo-obstruction demonstrates female population predominance and presents with vomiting, diarrhea, and weight loss. Amyloidosis-associated pseudo-obstruction shows male population predominance. Small bowel is more commonly involved than large bowel on both imaging and transit studies in SSc. Myopathic involvement was more common in SSc, contrary to neuropathic in paraneoplastic syndrome.
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