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Mayo Clin Proc. 1999 Mar;74(3):217-22.

Survival of home parenteral nutrition-treated patients: 20 years of experience at the Mayo Clinic.

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Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, Florida 32224, USA.



To present the largest single institutional review of demographics, associated primary diseases, and survival of patients receiving home parenteral nutrition (HPN).


We conducted a retrospective review of medical records of all Mayo Clinic patients treated with HPN between 1975 and 1995. The probability of survival was calculated by using Kaplan-Meier analysis.


In the 225 study patients requiring HPN (median age, 51 years), the main underlying primary diseases were as follows: inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) (N = 50), nonterminal active cancer (N = 39), ischemic bowel (N = 35), radiation enteritis (N = 32), motility disorder (chronic pseudo-obstruction) (N = 26), and adhesive intestinal obstruction (N = 18). Other conditions included intestinal and pancreatic fistula, refractory sprue, dumping syndrome, and protein-losing enteropathy. The overall probability of 5-year survival during HPN was 60%. The probability of survival at 5 years based on the primary disease was 92% for IBD, 60% for ischemic bowel, 54% for radiation enteritis, 48% for motility disorder, and 38% for cancer. The probability of 5-year survival stratified by age at initiation of HPN was as follows: younger than 40 years, 80%; 40 through 60 years, 62%; and older than 60 years, 30%. Most deaths during therapy with HPN were attributable to the primary disease. Among the 20 patients who died of an HPN-related cause, 11 deaths were from catheter sepsis, 4 from liver failure, 2 from venous thrombosis, and 2 from metabolic abnormalities.


Survival of HPN-treated patients is best predicted on the basis of the primary disease and the age at initiation of HPN. Patients with IBD and age younger than 40 years have a better 5-year survival in comparison with other groups. Most deaths during treatment with HPN are a result of the primary disease; HPN-related deaths are uncommon.

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