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Effects of Sugars and Amino Acids on Sodium Movement Across Small Intestine

Jehan-F. Desjeux, MD; Carl Tannenbaum, PhD; Yuan-Heng Tai, PhD; Peter F. Curran, PhD
Am J Dis Child. 1977;131(3):331-340. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1977.02120160085015.
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Among the many treatments for acute diarrhea, oral ingestion of glucose has received much attention. However, this treatment may have opposite effects in different situations. Simple ingestion of an electrolyte solution containing glucose has proved to be an efficient and simple treatment for the acute diarrhea associated with cholera and appears to be a usable alternative to the intravenous infusion of water and electrolytes to maintain fluid balance.1-5 The favorable socioeconomic consequences of such an approach have been apparent to many pediatricians.6 In contrast, glucose is one of the many substances known to aggravate acute diarrhea in some situations that are not always well defined.7-10 In these clinical situations, glucose ingestion may have been the direct cause of infant death.10.11 Similarly, in the rare congenital glucose-galactose malabsorption syndrome, the extensive intestinal fluid loss is clearly caused by ingestion of glucose and galactose.

Water absorption or


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