Published online May 21, 2019. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v25.i19.2294
Peer-review started: February 17, 2019
First decision: March 14, 2019
Revised: March 23, 2019
Accepted: March 29, 2019
Article in press: March 30, 2019
Published online: May 21, 2019
Core tip: Congenital peritoneal encapsulation (CPE) is a very rare congenital disorder characterised by the presence of an accessory peritoneal membrane surrounding the entirety of the small intestine. Though not fully understood, it is thought to arise due to an aberrant peritoneal adhesion during foetal mid-gut development. It is a rare but important cause of undifferentiated abdominal pain and sub-acute small bowel obstruction. We present a comprehensive review of CPE including an international epidemiological focus, diagnosis and treatment. We also describe a novel classification system for encapsulating bowel diseases.