Background. The effects of small intestine transplantation on enteric physiology are poorly understood. After orthotopic jejunoileal autotransplantation, dogs develop a severe watery diarrhea and lose up to 15% of their body weight. The cause of these changes has not been explained. Our aim was to determine the influence of jejunoileal autotransplantation on ileal absorption of water, electrolytes, and bile salts and the effects of proabsorptive and prosecretory agents on ileal transport. methods. Seven dogs were studied before and at 2 and 8 weeks after in situ jejunoileal neural and lymphatic isolation (a model of small intestine autotransplantion). With a triple-lumen perfusion technique, net ileal fluxes of water, electrolytes, and bile salts were measured before and at 2 and 8 weeks after this model of jejunoileal autotransplantation. In addition, the effects of an intravenous infusion of vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (a prosecretory agent) and norepinephrine (a proabsorptive agent) on net transport were evaluated. Results. Dogs developed a profuse diarrhea after this model of autotransplantation. Ileal absorption of water and electrolytes decreased immediately (measured during operation), remained decreased for 2 weeks, and returned toward baseline by 8 weeks. A similar decrease in net flux of bile salts was shown at 2 weeks after transplantation and returned toward baseline by 8 weeks. The prosecretory response of vasoactive intestinal polypeptide on ileal fluxes of water and electrolytes was unchanged, whereas the proabsorptive response to norepinephrine increased after this model of autotransplantation. Conclusions. Jejunoileal autotransplantation decreases ileal absorption of water, electrolytes, and bile salts. The profuse watery diarrhea observed in dogs after small intestine autotransplantation may be a secretory and/or a bile salt-induced diarrhea related to the effects of jejunoileal denervation.
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