Treatments and Procedures

Who We Treat

The gastroenterologists, surgeons, and transplant specialists at NewYork-Presbyterian/Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital are experts in the care of a number of conditions that may be related to short bowel syndrome, such as:

  • Gastroschisis
  • Intestinal atresia
  • Intestinal pseudo-obstruction
  • Intestinal absorption problems
  • Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC)
  • Volvulus

How We Care for Children with Small Bowel Disorders

We use a variety of treatments for infants with small bowel disorders, including feeding therapy and surgery. About 80 percent of patients with small bowel syndrome are generally candidates for rehabilitation and 20 percent are candidates for small bowel transplantation.

Nonsurgical Treatment: Intestinal Rehabilitation

  • Treatment of intestinal failure includes nutritional support, often through total parenteral nutrition (TPN, where your child receives nutrients through a catheter placed in a central vein) or a feeding tube.
  • If your child's care begins in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), he or she will receive that care from neonatologists collaborating with our pediatric gastroenterologists. Once your baby leaves the NICU, the pediatric gastroenterology team continues to provide care.
  • When your child is ready to leave the hospital, we’ll continue to see him or her regularly in our weekly outpatient clinic, where we provide intestinal rehabilitation as your child grows.

Surgical Treatment: Small Bowel Transplantation

  • Our surgeons use the Bianchi procedure, in which the bowel is cut in half and one end is sewn to the other, to treat short bowel syndrome when the intestine is stretched beyond its normal dimensions (symmetric bowel dilatation).
  • Your child may have a pre-transplant bowel-lengthening surgery called serial transverse enteroplasty (STEP), which enables food to move more quickly through the repaired bowel and nutrients to be more quickly absorbed.
  • Our pediatric transplant surgeons can perform small bowel transplantation to replace a non-functioning section of the colon. If your child’s situation is more complicated, our team has vast experience combining liver and small bowel transplantation. We can also perform liver, small bowel, and colon transplantation at the same time, if necessary. We are one of the very few centers with such expertise in multi-visceral transplantation—the transplantation of more than four organs, such as the stomach, small bowel, pancreas, liver, and large bowel.
  • Following complex surgeries, our social workers meet regularly with the transplant team to develop a discharge plan tailored to your child and your family. We strive to address any concerns you may have and to prepare you to support your child’s recovery.
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