What nutritional support is needed during the treatment of peritonitis and abdominal sepsis?

Updated: Jul 23, 2019
  • Author: Brian J Daley, MD, MBA, FACS, FCCP, CNSC; Chief Editor: Praveen K Roy, MD, AGAF  more...
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In general, patients with peritonitis develop some degree of gut dysfunction (eg, ileus) after exploration. Consider establishing some form of nutritional support early in the course of treatment because most patients have an insufficient enteral intake for a variable amount of time preoperatively. The existing data support that enteral nutrition is superior to parenteral hyperalimentation. Enteral nutrition has been found to have fewer complications in patients who are severely ill. If enteral feeding is contraindicated or not tolerated, parenteral nutrition should be instituted.

Nutritional demands increase during sepsis, with caloric requirements of 25-35 kcal/kg/d. Patients with sepsis should be fed a high-protein isocaloric diet. Hypercaloric diets cannot prevent the intense protein catabolism associated with sepsis. [28]

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