The Complex Surgical Abdomen: What the Nonsurgeon Intensivist Needs to Know

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Intensivists are often called upon to help care for patients who develop severe sepsis syndrome and septic shock where the primary source is an enterocutaneous fistula (ECF). The purpose of this article is to describe to the nonsurgeon intensivist how these complex surgical situations arise in the first place and provide the reader with a detailed understanding of the potentially devastating complications of ECF. In addition, we will describe a structured algorithm regarding the management of this often highly challenging surgical situation.

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