Phlegmonous colitis: A specific and severe complication of chronic hepatic disease

Toshimi Satoh, Eizaburo Sasatomi, Liqing Wu, Osamu Tokunaga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Phlegmonous colitis (PC) is an acute infectious entity caused by bacteria. In this study, we reviewed 8822 autopsy cases and found 13 cases of PC (0.15%). PC affected 2.43% of patients with hepatic cirrhosis or subacute liver atrophy, both of which were considered to be due to hepatitis viral infection. Before autopsy, none of the cases studied was suspected to involve PC, irrespective of the immediate cause of patient death. Thirteen autopsy cases showed some or all of the following pathohistologic characteristics: (1) involvement of the cecum (9 cases, 76.9%), (2) phlegmonous inflammatory changes and edema in the submucosa (100%), (3) bacterial infection (100%), (4) no microscopically detectable mucosal injuries (12 cases, 92.3%), and (5) acute serositis (peritonitis) (2 cases, 15.4%). These results suggest that PC is an unrecognized, but fatal complication of patients with some hepatic diseases and that PC has pathohistologic characteristics in common with previously reported spontaneous bacterial peritonitis in animal models. PC probably arises due to spontaneous infection in patients with hepatic cirrhosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)656-661
Number of pages6
JournalVirchows Archiv
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Autopsy
  • Bacterial infection
  • Hepatic cirrhosis
  • Phlegmonous colitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Phlegmonous colitis: A specific and severe complication of chronic hepatic disease'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this