Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Malabsorption

Contributor(s): Philip K Nicholls, Kenneth Simpson, Aarti Kathrani

Introduction

  • Poor absorption of nutrients from small intestine.
  • Cause: altered intestinal mucosal or lymphatic function.
  • Signs: diarrhea, weight loss, vomiting, lethargy, anorexia or polyphagia.
  • Diagnosis: history, physical examination, laboratory tests, abdominal ultrasound, gastrointestinal histopathology.
  • Treatment: dependent on underlying cause.
  • Prognosis: can be guarded.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Mucosal damage often due to inflammatory response or neoplasia.

Specific

Pathophysiology

  • Reduced nutrient absorption due to:
    • Villous atrophy  →  decreased surface area  →  decreased absorptive capacity.
    • Mucosal damage  →  loss of mucosal integrity  →  increased intestinal permeability.
    • Mucosal damage  → loss of brush border enzymes Brush border membrane disease  → decreased digestion and absorption.
    • Infiltration of lamina propria with inflammatory or neoplastic cells  →  reduced absorption and altered motility.
    • Lymphangiectasia  →  malabsorption of lipoproteins and fats.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Toresson L, Steiner J M, Olmedal G (2017) Oral cobalamin supplementation in cats with hypocobalaminaemia : a retrospective study. J Feline Med Surg 19 (12), 1302-1306 PubMed.
  • Jergens A E (2012) Feline idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease: what we know and what remains to be unraveled. J Feline Med Surg 14 (7), 445-458 PubMed.
  • Willard M D (1999) Feline inflammatory bowel disease: a review. J Feline Med Surg 1 (3), 155-164 PubMed.


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