Other nonneoplastic
Colitis cystica profunda

Topic Completed: 1 August 2013

Minor changes: 1 October 2020

Copyright: 2003-2021,, Inc.

PubMed Search: colitis cystica profunda

Raul S. Gonzalez, M.D.
Page views in 2020: 3,413
Page views in 2021 to date: 651
Cite this page: Gonzalez R. Colitis cystica profunda. website. Accessed March 4th, 2021.
Definition / general
  • Reactive mucosal change characterized by submucosal mucin filled cysts lined by benign epithelium
  • Also called colitis cystica polyposa or hamartomatous inverted polyp when presents as polypoid lesion
  • Uncommon; male predilection
  • Can occur anywhere in GI tract, including stomach ("gastritis cystica profunda") and small intestine ("enteritis cystica profunda")
  • Secondary to mucosal damage due to ulcerative colitis, Crohn disease, radiation, diverticulitis or other inflammation / ulceration of bowel; mucus follows granulation tracts to involve large areas of bowel
Clinical features
  • Stools contain blood or mucus; patients may have diarrhea or abdominal pain
Radiology description
Radiology images

Images hosted on other servers:

Barium imaging shows filling defect

Case reports
  • Patient education to avoid straining, high fiber diet with bulk laxatives, surgery for rectal prolapse
Clinical images

Images hosted on other servers:

Submucosal abnormality

Gross description
  • May appear as a polypoid or submucosal mass
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Either localized or diffuse; similar histology to colorectal polyps in Cowden syndrome although "inverted"
  • Misplaced benign colonic epithelium forming cystic spaces filled with mucin and surrounded by lamina propria; mucin may extravasate into surrounding tissue
Differential diagnosis
Back to top
Image 01 Image 02