Comparison of Urografin versus standard therapy in postoperative small bowel obstruction

J Invest Surg. 2005 Nov-Dec;18(6):315-20. doi: 10.1080/08941930500328789.


Water-soluble contrast media (Urografin) cause redistribution of intravascular and extracellular fluid into intestinal lumen due to their hyperosmolarity. As a consequence, these media decrease intestinal wall edema and act as a direct stimulant to intestinal peristalsis. In this prospective study, we aimed to examine objectively the therapeutic role and ability of Urografin in patients with postoperative small bowel obstruction for whom failed to respond to conservative treatment. Three hundred and seventeen patients with postoperative small bowel obstruction due to intraperitoneal adhesions were included prospectively in this study. In the Urografin group, 40 mL Urografin diluted in 40 mL distilled water was administered through the nasogastric tube. No contrast media were administered in the control group, but the patients were decompressed via a nasogastric tube continuously. The number of obstruction episode in 317 patients was 338. In total, 199 patients were in the Urografin group, and 118 patients were in the control group. In the Urografin group, 178 (89.4%) patients responded successfully to the treatment, but 21 (11.6%) patients underwent surgical operation. Intensive intraabdominal adhesions and obstructing fibrous bands were observed and repaired in 15 (71.4%) patients at the operation, while 6 patients underwent segmental small intestine resection in control group, conventional management was successful in only 89 (75.4%) patients, and the remaining 29 (24.6%) patients underwent surgical intervention. In conclusion, it was suggested that in patients with intestinal obstruction due to postoperative intra-abdominal adhesion, water-soluble contrast media such as Urografin may be safely administered via a nasogastric tube or oral route and may decrease the need for surgical operation; furthermore, they may help the physician to operate the patients who needs surgery as early as possible.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Contrast Media / therapeutic use*
  • Diatrizoate Meglumine / therapeutic use*
  • Digestive System Surgical Procedures / adverse effects
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Obstruction / diagnostic imaging
  • Intestinal Obstruction / therapy*
  • Intestine, Small / diagnostic imaging
  • Intubation, Gastrointestinal
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Prospective Studies
  • Radiography
  • Tissue Adhesions / etiology
  • Tissue Adhesions / therapy


  • Contrast Media
  • Diatrizoate Meglumine