European Journal of Pediatrics

, Volume 178, Issue 10, pp 1537–1544 | Cite as

Can intussusceptions of small bowel and colon be transient? A prospective study

  • Qi Wang
  • Mengqi Luo
  • Xiaolong Xie
  • Yang Wu
  • Bo XiangEmail author
Original Article


We performed a prospective study to explore a diagnosis and treatment protocol of transient intussusception in children (TIC). Totally, 143 children with intussusception who met the inclusion criteria were firstly divided into intussusception involving only the small bowel and intussusception involving the colon group. And in each group, they were further divided into short-segment (≤ 3.0 cm) and long-segment (> 3.0 cm) groups according to the length of intussusception. After a period of conservative treatment, the incidence of TIC, the incidence of surgery, and recurrence were collected and analyzed. Finally, we found that the incidence of TIC in the short-segment group of small bowel intussusception (96.29%) was significantly higher than that in other groups (P ≤ 0.001). Besides, the incidence of surgery and recurrence in this group was relatively low too. Therefore, we summarized the inclusion criteria and treatments to the short-segment group of small bowel intussusception as the suggested protocol to TIC.

Conclusion: For cases of small bowel intussusception with no identified pathologic lead point, a short duration of symptoms, a length of ≤ 3.0 cm, a relatively abundant vascular flow signal, and a stable general condition, the spontaneous reduction could be expected and a period of conservative treatment with careful monitoring is recommended.

What is Known:

• The phenomenon of spontaneous reduction in intussusception (transient intussusception) among pediatric patients has been widely reported.

• To distinguish the transient intussusception from the other types is important for the transient ones only need conservative treatment rather than enema reduction or surgery.

What is New:

• This is the first prospective study to explore a diagnosis and treatment protocol of transient intussusception in children.

• Short-segment small bowel intussusceptions have a higher rate (96.29%) to get spontaneous reduction than the other types of intussusception.


Children Intussusception Transient intussusception Spontaneous reduction Ultrasound 



Color Doppler image


Duration of symptoms


Pathological lead point


Transient intussusception in children




Authors’ contributions

Qi Wang: participated in the design of this study, acquired and analyzed the data, drafted this manuscript, and agreed on the final version of this manuscript.

Mengqi Luo: participated in the design of this study, run statistical analysis of the data, drafted this manuscript, and agreed on the final version of this manuscript.

Xiaolong Xie: participated in the design of this study and agreed on the final version of this manuscript.

Yang Wu: designed this study, critically revised this manuscript, and agreed on the final version of this manuscript.

Bo Xiang: designed this study, critically revised this manuscript, and agreed on the final version of this manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pediatric SurgeryWest China Hospital of Sichuan UniversityChengduChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Oral Diseases, National Clinical Research Centre for Oral Diseases, West China Hospital of StomatologySichuan UniversityChengduChina

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