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Alcohol-induced liver disease
Alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency
Benign liver tumors
Cholestatic liver disease
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
Primary biliary cirrhosis
Primary sclerosing cholangitis
Pancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms
Familial adenomatous polyposis
Juvenile polyposis syndrome
Small bowel ischemia and infarction
Protein losing enteropathy
Short bowel syndrome (NORD)
Small bowel bacterial overgrowth syndrome
Diverticulosis and diverticulitis
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Cleft lip and palate
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Dental caries disease
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Appendicitis: Pathology review
Cirrhosis: Pathology review
Colorectal polyps and cancer: Pathology review
Congenital gastrointestinal disorders: Pathology review
Diverticular disease: Pathology review
Esophageal disorders: Pathology review
Gallbladder disorders: Pathology review
Gastrointestinal bleeding: Pathology review
GERD, peptic ulcers, gastritis, and stomach cancer: Pathology review
Inflammatory bowel disease: Pathology review
Jaundice: Pathology review
Malabsorption syndromes: Pathology review
Neuroendocrine tumors of the gastrointestinal system: Pathology review
Pancreatitis: Pathology review
Viral hepatitis: Pathology review
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tropical sprue p. 390
tropical sprue p. 390
Tropical sprue is a gastrointestinal disease that results in malabsorption of nutrients and water.
Just like the other “sprue” diseases, like celiac sprue which is more often known as celiac disease, in tropical sprue the villi of the small intestine become flattened, but the exact cause isn’t known.
The biggest clue is that tropical sprue seems to mostly affect individuals living in the the tropical regions of the world, like the Caribbean, India, and Southeast Asia.
The most widely accepted theory is that an acute intestinal infection, which could be bacterial, viral, or protozoal, initially damages the intestinal lining, and this causes the first bit of inflammation.
In response, the intestinal cells secrete enteroglucagon, which is a hormone that decreases intestinal motility.
Decreased motility means that food’s allowed to linger in the intestines for longer than usual.
In tropical sprue, Klebsiella, E. coli, and Enterobacter end up becoming those dominant bacteria. These guys release toxic byproducts as they ferment the food that lingers in the gut, and these toxins can damage the intestinal lining, leading to more inflammation.
Over time, all of this chronic inflammation leads to villous atrophy, which is flattening of the villi that line the small intestine.
Villi are important because they provide the surface area and digestive enzymes necessary for nutrient absorption.
Flattening of the villi reduces this surface area, which means less nutrients and water can be absorbed across the intestinal wall, which leads to malabsorption.
Tropical sprue is a condition that affects the small intestine and is characterized by malabsorption of nutrients, particularly vitamin B12 and folate. It is thought to be due to bacterial overgrowth, most commonly of Klebsiella, E. coli, and Enterobacter species. Symptoms of tropical sprue may include diarrhea, weight loss, anemia, abdominal pain, bloating, and fatigue. Treatment for tropical sprue typically involves using antibiotics to reduce bacterial overgrowth, and nutrition replacement to deal with specific deficiencies like folate and Vitamin B12.
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