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  1. Robin Spiller, Editor

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While short bowel syndrome is fortunately rare, patients who have it develop numerous complications, many of which relate to their need for total parental nutrition (TPN). If the colon remains intact in short bowel syndrome then compensatory secretion of certain gut hormones, including glucagon-like peptide 2 (GLP-2), leads to mucosal hypertrophy, compensation of absorptive defects, and in some cases cessation of the need for total PN. This study examined the effect of an analogue of GLP-2 given subcutaneously once daily for 21 days. Ten of the patients had an end jejunostomy (group 1) while five had > 50% of the colon remaining (group 2). GLP-2 induced an increase in villous height in group 1 and eight out of 10 showed clinical benefit with about a 10% fall in faecal calorie loss and a 1.4 kg rise in weight. Four out of five of those in group 2 also showed a fall in faecal energy excretion. Although the effect appeared transient, with most parameters returning to pre-treatment levels 2–3 …

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