Sameer Bhat,Puja Sharma BMedSc (Hons),Nelle-Rose Cameron BMedSc (Hons),Ian P. Bissett FRACS,Greg O'Grady FRACS
Background & aims: High-output double enterostomies (DESs) and enteroatmospheric fistulas (EAFs) of the small bowel account for substantial patient morbidity and mortality. Management may include parenteral nutrition (PN) and prolonged admissions, at high cost. Reinfusion of chyme into the distal bowel is a proposed therapeutic alternative when the distal DES limb is accessible; however, standardized information on this technique is required. This review aimed to critically assess the literature regarding chyme reinfusion (CR) to define its current status and future directions.
Methods: A systematic search of medical databases was conducted for articles investigating CR in adults. Articles reporting indications, methods, benefits, technical issues, and complications resulting from CR were reviewed. A narrative synthesis of the retrieved data was undertaken.
Results: In total, 24 articles reporting 481 cases of CR were identified, although articles were heterogeneous in their structure and reporting. CR was most frequently performed for remediation of high-output DES and intestinal failure and for proximally located DES. Effluent output collection was commonly manual, with distal reinfusion more commonly automated, and with few dedicated systems. Multiple benefits attributed to CR were reported, encompassing weight gain, cessation of PN, and improvements in liver function. Technical problems included distaste, labor-intensive methods, reflux of contents, and tube dislodgement. No serious AEs or mortality directly attributable to CR were reported.
Conclusion: CR appears to be a promising, safe and well-validated intervention for small bowel DES and EAF. However, more efficient and acceptable methods are required to promote greater adoption of the practice of CR.