[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT:
Toxic megacolon is a severe complication of Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) colitis. As the prevalence of C. difficile colitis increases and treatments become more refractory, clinicians will encounter more patients with C. difficile associated toxic megacolon in the future. Here, we review a case of toxic megacolon secondary to C. difficile colitis and review the current literature on diagnosis and management. We identify both clinical and radiologic criteria for diagnosis and discuss both medical and surgical options for management. Ultimately, we recommend using the Jalen criteria in conjunction with daily abdominal radiographs to help establish the diagnosis of toxic megacolon and to make appropriate treatment recommendations. Aggressive medical management using supportive measures and antibiotics should remain the mainstay of treatment. Surgical intervention should be considered if the patient does not clinically improve within 2-3 d of initial treatment.