Abstract Title:

Diarrhoea during enteral nutrition is predicted by the poorly absorbed short-chain carbohydrate (FODMAP) content of the formula.

Abstract Source:

Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2010 Oct ;32(7):925-33. PMID: 20670219

Abstract Author(s):

E P Halmos, J G Muir, J S Barrett, M Deng, S J Shepherd, P R Gibson

Article Affiliation:

Department of Medicine, Monash University, Box Hill, Vic., Australia. [email protected]


BACKGROUND: Although it is recognized that diarrhoea commonly complicates enteral nutrition, the causes remain unknown.

AIM: To identify factors associated with diarrhoea in patients receiving enteral nutrition with specific attention to formula composition.

METHODS: Medical histories of in-patients receiving enteral nutrition were identified by ICD-10-AM coding and randomly selected from the year 2003 to 2008. Clinical and demographic data were extracted. Formulas were classified according to osmolality, fibre and FODMAP (fermentable oligo-, di- and mono-saccharides and polyols) content.

RESULTS: Formula FODMAP levels ranged from 10.6 to 36.5 g/day. Of 160 patients receiving enteral nutrition, 61% had diarrhoea. Univariate analysis showed diarrhoea was associated with length of stay>21 days (OR 4.2), enteral nutrition duration>11 days (OR 4.0) and antibiotic use (OR 2.1). After adjusting for influencing variables through a logistic regression model, a greater than five-fold reduction in risk of developing diarrhoea was seen in patients initiated on Isosource 1.5 (P = 0.029; estimated OR 0.18). The only characteristic unique to this formula was its FODMAP content, being 47-71% lower than any other formula.

CONCLUSIONS: Length of stay and enteral nutrition duration independently predicted diarrhoea development, while being initiated on a lower FODMAP formula reduced the likelihood of diarrhoea. As retrospective evaluation does not support a cause-effect relationship, an interventional study investigating FODMAPs in enteral formula is indicated.

Study Type : Human Study

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