When a hole develops in the wall of the gallbladder, rectum, large bowel, small intestine, stomach or oesophagus, it is called gastrointestinal perforation. It is a medical emergency that needs urgent medical attention.
Symptoms of gastrointestinal perforation (GP) usually include
Peritonitis (abdominal cavity lining inflammation) can also accompany the abovementioned condition. So in addition to the above symptoms, you may also experience peritonitis symptoms such as:
Certain diseases can cause Gastro-intestinal perforation, such as:
Besides diseases, the following conditions can also lead to Gastro-intestinal perforation:
This condition is mostly treated with surgery. The goal of the surgery is to repair the anatomical problem and cause of peritonitis, along with removal of any foreign object in the abdominal socket, such as food, faeces and bile. However, if your doctor deems surgery unnecessary (in instances where the hole closes voluntarily) you will be only given antibiotics.
In some cases, a section of the intestine might need to be removed. An ileostomy or colostomy is performed where a portion of the large or small intestine is removed, which grants intestinal contents to empty or drain into a bag implanted on the wall of your abdomen.
The complications include: