John Libbey Eurotext

Médecine et Santé Tropicales


Short bowel syndrome: difficulties of management in rural areas Volume 28, issue 4, Octobre-Novembre-Décembre 2018


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1 Service de chirurgie, Hôpital militaire de Ouakam BP 24175 Dakar, Sénégal
2 Service de chirurgie générale, Hôpital régional de Thiès, Sénégal
* Correspondance
  • Key words: bowel, bowel strangulation, adhesions, parenteral feeding, surgery
  • DOI : 10.1684/mst.2018.0855
  • Page(s) : 430-3
  • Published in: 2018

Introduction: The causes of short bowel syndrome are multiple, but most often in sub-Saharan Africa they result from extensive surgical resection that leaves less than 200 cm. Intestinal failure appears rapidly with a major hydroelectrolytic deficiency and malabsorption. Management requires parenteral nutrition that can be life-long. Observation: A 53 year-old patient underwent surgery in 1986 for peptic ulcer disease and recovered successfully. He was admitted in July 2015 for acute bowel obstruction of more than 8 hours duration. Intraoperative exploration showed irreversible ischemia in the small bowel, related to tight adhesions. An extensive resection leaving 110 cm of bowel was carried out. Postoperatively, nutritional monitoring and oral supplementation were prescribed and associated with proton pump inhibitors and antidiarrhea drugs. Parenteral feeding was not available. The postoperative period was characterized by temporary stability followed by a significant weight loss, then by two hospitalizations for severe malnutrition and intercurrent infection. Death occurred 7 months after the operation. Conclusion: Parenteral nutrition is essential in short bowel syndrome. Availability, especially for a long-term use, is a major problem in our context, and alternatives are rare.