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The Long-Term Treatment of Short Bowel Syndrome

DISCOVERIES REPORTS (ISSN 2393249X), 2016, volume 2


Stancu SM, Cirstoveanu CG. The Long-Term Treatment of Short Bowel Syndrome. Discoveries Reports 2016; 2: e6. DOI: 10.15190/drep.2016.2

 Submitted: July 3rd, 2016; Revised: August 2nd, 2016; Accepted: August 4th, 2016Published: August 10th, 2016;

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The Long-Term Treatment of Short Bowel Syndrome

Samantha McKenzie Stancu (1,*), Catalin Gabriel Cirstoveanu (2,*)

(1) Carol Davila University of Medicine & Pharmacy, 37 Dionisie Lupu Street, District 1, Bucharest, Romania

(2) Marie S. Curie Children’s Emergency Hospital, 20 Constantin Brancoveanu Street, District 4, Bucharest, Romania; 

*Correspondence to: Catalin Gabriel Cirstoveanu MD, PhD, Chief of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Marie S. Curie Children’s Emergency Hospital and Samantha McKenzie Stancu, Carol Davila University of Medicine & Pharmacy, 37 Dionisie Lupu Street, District 1, Bucharest, Romania; Emails: cirstoveanu@yahoo.com and samantha.mckenzie730@gmail.com


Short bowel syndrome (SBS) is the most common cause of intestinal failure in the pediatric population. Functionally, SBS is defined as the spectrum of malabsorption features occurring after extensive surgical resection. Congenital SBS is a rare entity, with an estimated prevalence of 0.02-0.1% among all live births. The mainstay of treatment consists of parenteral nutrition and intestinal rehabilitation, comprising surgical reconstruction. The two main procedures are Longitudinal Intestinal Lengthening and Tailoring procedure (LILT) and Serial Transverse Enteroplasty Procedure (STEP). Transplantation is reserved as treatment of last resort, when intestinal rehabilitation has been unsuccessful. Short bowel syndrome is a debilitating disease, whose management stretches over the course of years. However, with the innovation of surgical techniques such as LILT and STEP, as well as advances in multidisciplinary intestinal rehabilitation centers, long-term survival rates are approaching 90%. In this review we discuss the current and future treatment options for SBS.

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