Published online Aug 21, 2013. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v19.i31.5061
Revised: June 23, 2013
Accepted: June 28, 2013
Published online: August 21, 2013
Eosinophilic gastroenteritis (EGE) is a rare disorder characterized by eosinophilic infiltration of the bowel wall with various gastrointestinal manifestations. Till date only 280 cases have been described in the literature. A high index of suspicion, by excluding other causes of peripheral eosinophilia, is a pre requisite for accurate diagnosis. EGE is an uncommon gastrointestinal disease affecting both children and adults. It was first described by Kaijser in 1937. Presentation may vary depending on location as well as depth and extent of bowel wall involvement and usually runs a chronic relapsing course. This condition can respond to low dose steroid therapy, thereby preventing grave complications like ascites and intestinal obstruction that might need surgical intervention. The natural history of EGE has not been well documented. Eosinophilic gastroenteritis is a chronic, waxing and waning condition. Mild and sporadic symptoms can be managed with reassurance and observation, whereas disabling gastrointestinal (GI) symptom flare-ups can often be controlled with oral corticosteroids. When the disease manifests in infancy and specific food sensitization can be identified, the likelihood of disease remission by late childhood is high. GI obstruction is the most common complication. Fatal outcomes are rare.
Core tip: Eosinophilic gastroenteritis is a rare disorder characterised by eosinophilic infiltration of the bowel wall and various gastrointestinal manifestations. Diagnosis requires a high index of suspicion and exclusion of various disorders that are associated with peripheral eosinophilia. Corticosteroids are the mainstay of therapy with a 90% response rate.