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Tropical Sprue

Salmaan A. Jawaid, MD and Randall Pellish, MD Reviewed 06/2019
 


BASICS

DESCRIPTION

  • Malabsorption syndrome (MAS) of unknown/infectious etiology occurring primarily in patients in the tropics and subtropics: diagnosis likely if (1):

    • Typical clinical presentation

    • Defi...

DIAGNOSIS

HISTORY

  • Fatigue

  • Asthenia

  • Weight loss

  • Diarrhea (usually chronic)

  • Abdominal cramps

  • Borborygmi

  • Night blindness (vitamin A deficiency)

  • Anorexia

  • Steatorrhea

  • Paresthesias

  • Ecchymoses (vitamin K deficiency)

PHYSICAL EXAM

TREATMENT

GENERAL MEASURES

  • Correct nutritional deficiencies (e.g., vitamin B12, folic acid).

  • Control diarrhea.

  • Replace fluids, electrolytes; transfuse as necessary.

  • Relapsing symptoms and malnutrition pos...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

No restrictions, as tolerated 

Patient Monitoring

As needed for symptoms 

DIET

No special diet (gluten-free diets do not have an effect on this disease); restriction ...

REFERENCES

1
Ghoshal UC, Srivastava D, Verma A, et al. Tropical sprue in 2014: the new face of an old disease. Curr Gastroenterol Rep.  2014;16(6):391. [View Abstract on OvidMedline]
2
Jeejeebhoy KN...

ADDITIONAL READING

  • Lo A, Guelrud M, Essenfeld H, et al. Classification of villous atrophy with enhanced magnification endoscopy in patients with celiac disease and tropical sprue. Gastrointest Endosc....

SEE ALSO

  • Celiac Disease; Diarrhea, Chronic

  • Algorithm: Diarrhea, Chronic

CODES

ICD10

K90.1 Tropical sprue 

ICD9

579.1 Tropical sprue 

SNOMED

47384003 Tropical sprue (disorder) 

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • Tropical sprue is endemic in certain areas.

  • Unless treated, symptoms persist or recur.

  • Gluten-free diet does not alter symptoms of tropical sprue.

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