Enteral Nutrition and Bowel Management

  • Irene ComissoEmail author
  • Stefano Bambi


Nutrition is a key component in the treatment of critically ill patients. Nutritional assessment can be realized through body measurement and scores. Artificial nutrition can be administered both enterally and parenterally, the first being preferred when not contraindicated. Enteral nutrition can result in intolerance, with several complications such as vomiting, diarrhea, and high gastric residual volume. Attention should be given to drugs administered via a nasogastric tube.

Common alterations in ICU patients also affect the bowel. Constipation and diarrhea are not uniformly described and might influence major outcomes such as mortality and length of stay. Shared protocols can facilitate proper recognition and treatment of gastrointestinal conditions.


Feeding requirement Enteral nutrition Gastric residual volume Diarrhea Constipation 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University Anesthesia and Intensive Care Unit, University Hospital S. Maria della MisericordiaUdineItaly
  2. 2.Emergency & Trauma ICU, University Hospital CareggiFlorenceItaly

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