Pathology of the Gastrointestinal Tract

2017 Edition
| Editors: Fátima Carneiro, Paula Chaves, Arzu Ensari

Malabsorption Syndrome

  • Arzu EnsariEmail author
Reference work entry


Insufficient absorption; Maldigestion


Malabsorption syndrome refers to the clinical picture comprising diarrhea, steatorrhea, malnutrition, weight loss, abdominal pain, and anemia due to maldigestion, mucosal/mural problems, or infections. The small intestine is the part of the gastrointestinal tract where much of the absorption takes place due to high surface area provided by the villous and microvillous architecture and numerous digestive enzymes on its surface actively secreted to optimize uptake of dietary substances. Malabsorption develops when malfunction in any of these components leads to failure of absorption of nutrients resulting from a wide variety of causes which can be classified into three groups: (i) maldigestion which is related to mixing and digestive mediators; (ii) mucosal or mural causes including celiac disease, tropical sprue, autoimmune enteropathy, AIDS enteropathy, and systemic sclerosis; and (iii) microbial causes including bacterial...
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References and Further Reading

  1. Babbin, B. A., Crawford, K., & Sitaraman, S. V. (2006). Malabsorption work-up: Utility of small bowel biopsy. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, 4, 1193–1198.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Fenoglio-Preiser, C. M., Noffsinger, A. E., Stemmermann, G. N., et al. (2008). The nonneoplastic small intestine. In C. M. Fenoglio Preiser (Ed.), Gastrointestinal pathology. An atlas and text (3rd ed., pp. 275–470). Philadelphia: Walters Kluwer-Lippincott-Williams and Wilkins.Google Scholar
  3. Murray, J. A., & Rubio-Tapia, A. (2012). Diarrhoea due to small bowel diseases. Best Practice & Research. Clinical Gastroenterology, 26, 581–600.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Owens, S. R., & Greenson, J. K. (2007). The pathology of malabsorption: Current concepts. Histopathology, 50, 64–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Thompson, A. B. R., Keelan, M., Thiesen, A., Clandinin, M. T., Ropeleski, M., & Wild, G. E. (2001). Small bowel review: Disease of the small intestine. Digestive Diseases and Sciences, 46, 2555–2566.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PathologyAnkara University Medical SchoolSihhiyeTurkey