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Nutrición Hospitalaria

versión impresa ISSN 0212-1611


OLVEIRA, Gabriel  y  OLVEIRA, Casilda. Nutrition, cystic fibrosis and the digestive tract. Nutr. Hosp. [online]. 2008, vol.23, suppl.2, pp.71-86. ISSN 0212-1611.

The prevalence of hyponutrition in cystic fibrosis is high although it may vary according to the different studies. Detection of hyponutrition should be done by combining different methods, depending on their availability. However, the simplest and most validated criterion is to measure at each visit the weight (and height in children) in order to calculate the body mass index and categorizing hyponutrition according to absolute criteria: in adults < 18.5 kg/m2, and in children as percentiles of the body mass index. Worsening of the nutritional status is directly related with the decrease in lung function parameters and it has been proposed as a morbidity (and even mortality) predictive factor in people with cystic fibrosis, independently of the level of pulmonary dysfunction. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency is present is approximately 70-90% of the patients with cystic fibrosis and the genotype-phenotype correlation is high. Most of the patients with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency tolerate a high-fat diet provided that they are treated with pancreatic enzymes at appropriate doses. The prevalence of diabetes increases with age, reaching up 40% of the cases in patients older than 30 years. Clinical liver involvement is less prevalent (it approximately affects 1/3 of the patients). Other intestinal complications such as meconial ileus, gastroesophageal reflux, obstruction of the distal intestine, or fibrosing colon disease may also condition malnourishment. In patients with cystic fibrosis, a usual high-fat diet providing 120%-150% of the recommended calories is advised. If the nutritional goals are not achieved or maintained with diet modifications, artificial supplements may be added, although the recommendation for their use has not been endorsed by solid scientific evidences. The most frequently used preparations usually are polymeric or hypercaloric. The indications for enteral (through a tube, especially gastrostomy) or parenteral nutritional support are similar to those used in other pathologies. Dietary and nutritional control should be included in a multidisciplinary program allowing the improvement of the functional capacity and the quality of life and reducing, at least from a theoretical viewpoint, the morbimortality associated to malnourishment in these patients.

Palabras clave : Nutrition; Cystic fibrosis; Enteral nutrition; Supplements; Diet.

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