Surgical Complications and Treatment of Intestinal Amebiasis

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  • Panama, R. P.

The complications requiring surgical intervention during the course of, or following, amebic infection of the intestines, naturally divide themselves into two distinct groups: i.e., those arising from the direct action of the parasites; and those of purely mechanical origin, the result of severe diarrhea and tenesmus.

The latter group will be only briefly mentioned, as they are in no way distinctive, in either symptoms or treatment, from similar conditions arising from any other severe diarrhea. Under this head, we find pruritis ani, and anal fissures, internal and external hemorrhoids, and varying degrees of rectal prolapse. Occasionally, some of these conditions may require treatment during the course of the disease, but such treatment is preferably postponed until the infection is either cured or under control. The introduction of emetin in the treatment of amebiasis has markedly reduced the number of complications of all types; for it controls the severe diarrhea and, by shortening the duration of the acute symptoms, prevents the occurrence of many of them.