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Chronic diarrhea after a journey to Sri Lanka

, : Chronic diarrhea after a journey to Sri Lanka. Zeitschrift für Gastroenterologie 40(12): 979-982

A 51-year-old woman was referred for evaluation of chronic diarrhea. She had spent a 14 day vacation in Sri Lanka three years ago. The clinical examination of the patient was unremarkable. Values for protein, iron, zinc, copper and folic acid were decreased and the Shilling- and D-xylose tests revealed pathological results. Gliadin and Endomysium antibodies were not detectable. Histologic examination of the duodenum displayed chronic duodenitis with increased epithelial regeneration and villous atrophy. In the MRI a segment of the mid small bowel with increased thickness of the intestinal wall was described. Abdominal CT-scans demonstrated multiple, enlarged mesenteric lymph nodes. Laparoscopy with biopsies of the ileum and mesenteric lymph nodes excluded a malignant lymphoma, mycobacteriosis or Whipple's disease. Oral therapy with tetracyclines (250 mg q. i. d.) and substitution of folic acid and iron led to rapid improvement of the clinical symptoms which persisted after cessation of the antibiotic therapy. In view of the clinical course tropical sprue has to be assumed despite the short duration of the journey to a tropical region.


PMID: 12518263

DOI: 10.1055/s-2002-36154

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