The open abdomen: why and when should the abdomen be left open? (Part 1 of 3)

  • Jan P Pretorius University of Pretoria
  • C Liebenberg University of Pretoria
  • D Piek University of Pretoria
  • M Smith University of Pretoria
Keywords: intra-abdominal hypertension, abdominal compartment syndrome, polycompartment syndrome, multiple organ dysfunction, monitoring intra-abdominal pressure

Abstract

Intra-abdominal hypertension, abdominal compartment syndrome (ACS) and poly-compartment syndrome are serious clinical problems. The key is early recognition of at risk patients so that preventative measures may be implemented. The concepts of controlled fluid resuscitation, surveillance and prophylactic operative decompression with temporary abdominal closure (TAC) are central to prevention of the events leading to multiple organ dysfunction. Where ACS develops, therapeutic operative decompression and TAC is the management of choice.

Author Biographies

Jan P Pretorius, University of Pretoria
MBChB, MMed(Surg), FCS(SA) Critical Care Department of Critical Care Medical School Faculty of Health Sciences University of Pretoria and the Steve Biko Academic Hospital
C Liebenberg, University of Pretoria
MBChB Department of Critical Care Medical School Faculty of Health Sciences University of Pretoria and the Steve Biko Academic Hospital
D Piek, University of Pretoria
MBChB Department of Critical Care Medical School Faculty of Health Sciences University of Pretoria and the Steve Biko Academic Hospital
M Smith, University of Pretoria
MBChB Department of Critical Care Medical School Faculty of Health Sciences University of Pretoria and the Steve Biko Academic Hospital
Published
2010-08-16
Section
General Review