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Digestion and absorption in a man with three feet of small intestine

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Digestion and absorption in a man with three feet of small intestine has been studied over a seven day period.

The assimilation of carbohydrate was found to be normal.

About 25 per cent of the ingested protein and 45 per cent of the fat was lost in the feces representing roughly 25 per cent of the calorific value of the ingested food. The fecal fat contained a large proportion of free fatty acids indicating fairly satisfactory digestion of fat and poor absorption of fatty acids.

A high calcium and viosterol intake was necessary to keep the man in positive calcium balance. The large amount of fatty acids in the feces was probably chiefly responsible for the poor calcium absorption. The daily ratio of fecal calcium to fecal fat was remarkably constant which tends to support such an explanation.

The writers are indebted to Mr. Allen Priest, Dr. John Ramage and Miss Marlowe Dittebrandt for analytical aid, and to Dr. Paul I. Carter, Manager, Dr. R. W. Brace, Chief Medical Officer, and Misses Margaret Beach and Ella Larsh, Dieticians of the U. S. Veterans Hospital for their cooperation in making this study possible.

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Correspondence to Edward S. West or John R. Montague or Frederick R. Judy.

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West, E.S., Montague, J.R. & Judy, F.R. Digestion and absorption in a man with three feet of small intestine. American Journal of Digestive Diseases 5, 690–692 (1938). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02996604

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