3 patients, 2 women aged 41 and 47 and one man aged 75 years, presented with abdominal pain and distension. In 2 patients the diagnosis ‘sigmoid volvulus’ was reached following plain abdominal X-ray. Both patients underwent sigmoidal resection with primary anastomosis after endoscopic deflation. The third patient proved to have a caecal volvulus on emergency laparotomy and underwent ileocaecal resection. In 2/3 of the cases diagnosis can be made by history, physical examination and conventional X-ray. Delay in the diagnosis increases the risk of peritonitis and death due to ischaemia and perforation of the colon. In the absence of peritoneal tenderness, signs of ischaemia or sepsis, the initial treatment consists of endoscopic deflation, which is successful in 68-78% of cases. Resection of the sigmoid colon is recommended a few days after endoscopic decompression in order to prevent recurrence. Caecal volvulus is not suitable for treatment with endoscopic deflation and should be treated with ileocaecal resection.