Twisting of a loop of intestine or, in unusual cases, of the stomach. Volvulus is a gravely serious condition that creates obstruction of the passage of intestinal contents and a risk of strangulation. If strangulation arises, blockage of blood flow to the afflicted area leads to potentially life threatening gangrene (death of tissues in the area).
The symptoms of volvulus are extreme episodes of abdominal pain followed by vomiting. Volvulus can be present from birth or can be a result of adhesions (areas of scar tissue binding loops of intestine). It needs emergency medical treatment, often by surgery.