SynopsisCodesLook ForDiagnostic PearlsDifferential Diagnosis & PitfallsBest TestsManagement PearlsTherapyDrug Reaction DataReferences
Chronic mesenteric ischemia
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Chronic mesenteric ischemia

Contributors: Michael W. Winter MD, Paritosh Prasad MD
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Chronic mesenteric ischemia, also known as intestinal angina, is defined by reduced blood flow to major mesenteric arteries (celiac, superior mesenteric, inferior mesenteric) causing abdominal pain which is often postprandial. This can result in food aversion, anorexia, and weight loss.

Chronic mesenteric ischemia is typically caused by atherosclerotic disease. However, vasculitis, aortic or mesenteric artery dissection, fibromuscular dysplasia, celiac artery compression by the median arcuate ligament, retroperitoneal fibrosis, or endovascular graft occlusion should be considered as alternative etiologies.

The same risk factors for peripheral and coronary artery disease predispose to chronic mesenteric ischemia, namely smoking, hypertension, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia.

Related topic: Acute mesenteric ischemia


K55.1 – Chronic vascular disorders of intestine

111354009 – Chronic vascular insufficiency of intestine

Look For

Subscription Required

Diagnostic Pearls

Subscription Required

Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

  • Acute mesenteric ischemia
  • Peptic ulcer disease
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Gastritis
  • Malignancy
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Choledocholithiasis
  • Biliary calculus
  • Acute cholecystitis
  • Constipation (eg, Drug-induced constipation)
  • Pancreatic carcinoma
  • Hepatitis
  • Pericarditis
  • Angina (cardiac) (see Acute coronary syndrome, Coronary artery disease)
  • Esophageal motility disorder
  • Bowel obstruction (see Small bowel obstruction, Large bowel obstruction)
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (see Crohn disease, Ulcerative colitis)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Celiac disease

Best Tests

Subscription Required

Management Pearls

Subscription Required


Subscription Required

Drug Reaction Data

Below is a list of drugs with literature evidence indicating an adverse association with this diagnosis. The list is continually updated through ongoing research and new medication approvals. Click on Citations to sort by number of citations or click on Medication to sort the medications alphabetically.

Subscription Required


Subscription Required

Last Reviewed:12/26/2017
Last Updated:09/16/2020
Copyright © 2024 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.
Chronic mesenteric ischemia
Copyright © 2024 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.