Early recognition and control of sepsis, management of fluid and electrolyte imbalances, meticulous wound care and nutritional support appear to reduce the mortality rate, and allow spontaneous fistula closure in some patients. Definitive surgical management is performed only after restitution of normal physiology, usually after at least 6 months.
Management of enterocutaneous fistula should initially concentrate on correction of fluid and electrolyte imbalances, drainage of collections, treatment of sepsis and control of fistula output. The routine use of somatostatin infusion and somatostatin analogues remains controversial; although there are data suggesting reduced time to fistula closure, there is little evidence of increased probability of spontaneous closure. Malnutrition is common and adequate nutritional provision is essential, enteral where possible, although supplemental parenteral nutrition is often required for high-output small bowel fistulas. The role of immunonutrition is unknown. Surgical repair should be attempted when spontaneous fistula closure does not occur, but it should be delayed for at least 3 months.
OBJECTIVES:In the pivotal 24-week, phase III, placebo-controlled trial, teduglutide significantly reduced parenteral support (PS) requirements in patients with short bowel syndrome (SBS). STEPS-2 was a 2-year, open-label extension of that study designed to evaluate long-term safety and efficacy of teduglutide.METHODS:Enrolled patients had completed 24 weeks of either teduglutide (TED/TED) or placebo (PBO/TED) in the initial placebo-controlled study or qualified for that study, but were not treated (NT/TED) because of full enrollment. Patients received subcutaneous teduglutide 0.05 mg/kg/day for up to 24 months (NT/TED and PBO/TED) or up to 30 months (TED/TED). Clinical response was defined as 20–100% reduction from baseline in weekly PS volume; baseline was considered the beginning of teduglutide treatment in the initial placebo-controlled study (TED/TED) or STEPS-2 (NT/TED and PBO/TED). Descriptive statistics summarized changes in efficacy and safety variables.RESULTS:Of 88 enrolled patients, 65 (74%) completed STEPS-2. The most common treatment-emergent adverse events were abdominal pain (34%), catheter sepsis (28%), and decreased weight (25%). Mean weight, body mass index, and serum albumin remained stable. In patients who completed the study, clinical response was achieved in 28/30 (93%) TED/TED, 16/29 (55%) PBO/TED, and 4/6 (67%) NT/TED patients. Mean PS volume reductions from baseline were 7.6 (66%), 3.1 (28%), and 4.0 (39%) l/week in the TED/TED, PBO/TED, and NT/TED groups, respectively. Thirteen patients achieved full enteral autonomy.CONCLUSIONS:In patients with SBS, long-term teduglutide treatment resulted in sustained, continued reductions in PS requirements. Overall health and nutritional status was maintained despite PS reductions.
HPN is confirmed as the primary treatment for intestinal failure. Desmoids and HPN-related liver failure constitute indications for life-saving ITx. Catheter-related complications and ultra-short bowel might be indications for pre-emptive/rehabilitative ITx. In the early years after commencing HPN a life-saving ITx could be required for some patients at higher risk of death from their underlying disease.
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