Reference work entry
Insufficient absorption; Maldigestion
Malabsorption syndrome refers to the clinical picture comprising diarrhea, steatorrhea, malnutrition, weight loss, abdominal pain, and anemia due to maldigestion, mucosal/mural problems, or infections. The small intestine is the part of the gastrointestinal tract where much of the absorption takes place due to high surface area provided by the villous and microvillous architecture and numerous digestive enzymes on its surface actively secreted to optimize uptake of dietary substances. Malabsorption develops when malfunction in any of these components leads to failure of absorption of nutrients resulting from a wide variety of causes which can be classified into three groups: (i) maldigestion which is related to mixing and digestive mediators; (ii) mucosal or mural causes including celiac disease, tropical sprue, autoimmune enteropathy, AIDS enteropathy, and systemic sclerosis; and (iii) microbial causes including bacterial...
References and Further Reading
- Fenoglio-Preiser, C. M., Noffsinger, A. E., Stemmermann, G. N., et al. (2008). The nonneoplastic small intestine. In C. M. Fenoglio Preiser (Ed.), Gastrointestinal pathology. An atlas and text (3rd ed., pp. 275–470). Philadelphia: Walters Kluwer-Lippincott-Williams and Wilkins.Google Scholar
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