Malabsorption syndrome is the inability to absorb
nutrients, vitamins, and minerals from the intestinal tract into the
Causes may include:
- Diseases affecting the intestine itself, such as
- Absence or low levels of
certain digestive enzymes.
- Diseases of the pancreas, such as
chronic pancreatitis or
- Diseases caused by
parasites, such as
giardiasis or worms.
- Changes in the
bacteria normally found in the intestinal tract.
- Surgery, such as removal of the gallbladder, that
alters or reduces the length of the intestinal tract.
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Symptoms may include:
- Gas, bloating, and vague abdominal
- Frequent diarrhea and foul-smelling
- Weight loss.
Your doctor can evaluate your symptoms to
determine the cause and recommend treatment. Treatment may include a special
diet, medicine to replace intestinal enzymes or reduce spasms, and vitamin or
mineral supplements, such as B12 and iron.
- Diarrhea, Age 12 and Older
- D-Xylose Absorption Test
- Upper Gastrointestinal (UGI) Series