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Revista chilena de cirugía

versión On-line ISSN 0718-4026


BARRERA E, ALEJANDRO et al. Treatment of hemorrhagic radiation rectitis with topical application of 4% formaldehyde. Rev Chil Cir [online]. 2011, vol.63, n.4, pp. 394-398. ISSN 0718-4026.

Background: Hemorrhagic radiation rectitis occurs in 15% of patients subjected to pelvic irradiation. One of the treatment alternatives is the topical application of 4% formaldehyde. Aim: To report the results of the use of topical formaldehyde in radiation rectitis. Material and Methods: Twenty patients aged 36 to 80 years (13 women) with hemorrhagic radiation rectitis were prospectively recruited. Fistula or stenosis was discarded endoscopically. Formaldehyde was applied in the operating room or at the outpatient clinic. Results: Fifteen patients required repeated transfusions. The application was performed in the operating room in five patients. Bleeding stopped in three patients with one application, in 12 patients with two applications and in four, with three applications. In one patient, bleeding did not stop after the first application and had a sigmoid perforation; therefore no further application was attempted. One patient had a severe proctitis after the procedure, which subsided with symptomatic treatment after 15 days. Conclusions: Topical formaldehyde application for hemorrhagic rectitis is effective to stop bleeding but has complications in 10% of patients.

Palabras clave : Radiation rectitis; bleeding; formaldehyde.

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