Mesenteric ischemia (mez-un-TER-ik is-KEE-me-uh) is a condition caused by poor blood supply to your intestines. Mesenteric ischemia usually affects the small intestine, colon or both. It may also involve other organs in the digestive system. Mesenteric ischemia may be acute or chronic.

Acute mesenteric ischemia occurs suddenly as a result of blockage to the flow of oxygen-rich blood and can permanently damage your intestines. You may experience sudden abdominal pain and, less often, bloody stools. This situation requires immediate medical care.

Chronic mesenteric ischemia occurs gradually from narrowing in one or more of the arteries supplying blood to your intestines (visceral arteries). You may develop pain 1 to 2 hours after eating, This pain may make it hard for you to eat, leading to weight loss. You may also notice changes in the frequency of your bowel movements, as well as bloating, nausea and vomiting.

May 09, 2015