After removal of part of the small intestine or colon, the remaining portion needs time to adapt to absorb sufficient nutrients. During this adaptation period, the intestinal tract must grow more cells in order to increase its ability to absorb sufficient nutrients from formula and food.
It is in this adaptation period that infants and children have symptoms of short bowel syndrome (SBS) as the intestinal tract fails to properly absorb nutrients and fluids, also known as malabsorption. Patients with SBS may be at increased risk of developing food allergies.
It is important for the clinician to conduct regular nutritional monitoring to ensure the child’s diet is adequate. Monitoring can include a review of nutritional intake and requirements, growth measurements, assessment of symptoms and micronutrient status. Micronutrient supplementation needs will vary based on the child’s anatomy, degree of malabsorption and route of nutrition. A stool sample might be used to see if there is any fat in the stool which will indicate fat malabsorption.
Once an assessment of the case is made, the healthcare professional will help the patient with options to maintain a nutritionally complete diet through Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN), Parenteral Nutrition (PN), enteral or oral nutrition. The diet may consist of TPN initially and then advance to enteral (oral or tube) nutrition. A goal is to wean from PN as soon as medically possible. In many cases, a special formula like Neocate® is indicated.
Eventually, some children will be able to consume an oral diet.
Neocate® is a family of hypoallergenic, amino acid-based specialized formulas for use under medical supervision and is indicated for cow milk allergy, multiple food allergies and related GI and allergic conditions. Talk to your healthcare provider about product recommendations.
Neocate Nutra is suitable for use in children and infants older than 6 months of age (not suitable as sole source of nutrition). Neocate Nutra is not intended for bottle or tube feeding.
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