Copyright ©The Author(s) 2015. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Clin Cases. Aug 16, 2015; 3(8): 721-726
Published online Aug 16, 2015. doi: 10.12998/wjcc.v3.i8.721
Intestinal obstruction due to phytobezoars: An update
Enis Dikicier, Fatih Altintoprak, Orhan Veli Ozkan, Orhan Yagmurkaya, Mustafa Yener Uzunoglu
Enis Dikicier, Orhan Yagmurkaya, Mustafa Yener Uzunoglu, Department of General Surgery, Research and Educational Hospital, Sakarya University, 54100 Sakarya, Turkey
Fatih Altintoprak, Orhan Veli Ozkan, Department of General Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Sakarya University, 54100 Sakarya, Turkey
Author contributions: Dikicier E, Altintoprak F and Ozkan OV designed an organization to write a review article; Ozkan OV, Yagmurkaya O and Uzunoglu MY reviewed and summarized the literature data, wrote the paper; finally prepared the manuscript for submission.
Conflict-of-interest statement: The authors declare no conflict of interest. The authors certify that they have NO financial interest (such as honoraria; educational grants; participation in speakers’ bureaus; membership, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, or other equity interest), or non-financial interest in the subject matter or materials discussed in this manuscript.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Correspondence to: Orhan Veli Ozkan, Associate Professor of General Surgery, Department of General Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Sakarya University, Adnan Menderes Caddesi, Saglik Sokak No:193, 54100 Sakarya, Turkey.
Telephone: +90-532-3417440 Fax: +90-264-2552105
Received: February 11, 2015
Peer-review started: February 12, 2015
First decision: April 27, 2015
Revised: May 2, 2015
Accepted: May 27, 2015
Article in press: May 28, 2015
Published online: August 16, 2015

The term bezoar refers to an intraluminal mass in the gastrointestinal system caused by the accumulation of indigestible ingested materials, such as vegetables, fruits, and hair. Bezoars are responsible for 0.4%-4% of cases of mechanical intestinal obstruction. The clinical findings of bezoar-induced ileus do not differ from those of mechanical intestinal obstruction due to other causes. The appearance and localization of bezoars can be established with various imaging methods. Treatment of choice depends on the localization of the bezoar which makes the clinical findings.

Keywords: Phytobezoar, Intestinal obstruction, Ileus

Core tip: Bezoars are conglomerates of indigested foreign material that accumulate in the gastrointestinal tract. They are responsible for 0.4%-4% of cases of mechanical intestinal obstruction although the true incidence is not known. Recent advances in imaging methods have facilitated the diagnosis of intestinal obstruction due to phytobezoars. The most valuable method for determining the location and etiology of intestinal obstructions is contrast-enhanced computed tomography. This review aims to summarize the definition and history, causes of bezoar formation, clinical findings, diagnostic methods, treatment of these rare intestinal obstructions caused by phytobezoars.