An inflammatory fibroid polyp is a rare benign submucosal lesion frequently located in the gastric antrum but it may be found anywhere in the gastrointestinal tract with maximal incidence in the fifth and sixth decades of life. The main histological characteristics are diffuse inflammatory infiltrate with eosinophils, high vascularisation and a myofibroblastic component. Its localisation in the small bowel can cause intestinal invagination in adults, a condition, that occurs most frequently in childhood where, however, it is generally not related to a pathological lesion. The diagnosis may often be delayed because of its non-specific symptoms and most cases are diagnosed at emergency laparotomy, although CT scans can furnish useful preoperative information. In the majority of cases, the treatment of choice is surgical resection. Reduction performed prior to resection proves controversial in patients with colic intussusception because of the high incidence of malignancy. We report a case of a 37-year-old man who had undergone emergency surgery for acute ileum intussusception associated with a voluminous inflammatory fibroid polyp. The case described emphasises that patients with bowel obstruction pose a complex and difficult challenge to surgeons as regards the choice of the correct diagnostic work-up and optimal therapeutic management.
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