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Digestive and Gastrointestinal Conditions

Intestinal Failure


Because children with intestinal failure cannot absorb nutrients from the food they eat, they must get nutrition another way.

Intestinal Failure Treatment Options

Total parenteral nutrition (TPN)

TPN is a mixture containing nutrients that your child gets through a tube (catheter) inserted in a central vein (IV). Sometimes TPN is a long-term or even permanent solution for intestinal failure. But the chances of problems due to the need for TPN tend to increase over time.

Intestinal rehabilitation

Some children can be weaned off TPN with a newer treatment option called intestinal rehabilitation (IR). With intestinal rehabilitation, health care providers help restore your child's working intestine through diet, medicine and surgeries that do not include transplant. To learn more, please see information on our Intestinal Care Program.

Intestine Transplant

If you and your child's medical team decide a transplant is the best treatment for your child, our team will support you and your family throughout the process. For information on intestine transplants at Seattle Children's, please see What to Expect if Your Child Needs an Intestine Transplant.

Who Treats This at Seattle Children's?

Should your child see a doctor?

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Summer 2014: Good Growing Newsletter

In This Issue

  • Understanding the Power and Influence of Role Models
  • Legal Marijuana Means Greater Poisoning Risks for Children
  • Why Choose Pediatric Emergency Care?

Download Summer 2014 (PDF)