Management of the Post-op Abdominal Catastrophe and Open Abdomen

  • Priya S. Prakash
  • Patrick M. Reilly


Damage control surgery and the application of the open abdomen technique have continued to evolve since its conception, playing a crucial role in the treatment of the surgical patient in extremis. Abbreviated laparotomy is focused on rapid control of hemorrhage and contamination. Emphasis then shifts to the intensive care unit (ICU), where the patient’s physiologic derangements are reversed prior to returning to the operating room for definitive repair of injuries. This chapter will focus on the ICU management of the patient with an open abdomen, addressing approaches to resuscitation, fluid and electrolyte management, ventilation, and nutritional support. The challenges the intensivist faces when caring for the patient with an open abdomen will also be discussed.


Open abdomen Damage control Resuscitation Temporary abdominal closure Enteroatmospheric fistula 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Surgery, Division of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, Pritzker School of MedicineUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Department of Surgery, Division of Trauma, Surgical Critical Care, and Emergency Surgery, Perelman School of MedicineUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

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