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J Intensive Care Med. 2014 Sep-Oct;29(5):247-54. doi: 10.1177/0885066613476465. Epub 2013 Feb 6.

Intraabdominal infections in the intensive care unit.

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  • 1Albert-Ludwigs University Freiburg, Germany.
  • 2Department of Surgery, University of Massachusetts Medical School, MA, USA


Intraabdominal infections are frequent and dangerous entity in intensive care units. Mortality and morbidity are high, causes are numerous, and treatment options are variable. The intensivist is challenged to recognize and treat intraabdominal infections in a timely fashion to prevent complications and death. Diagnosis of intraabdominal infection is often complicated by confounding underlying disease or masked by overall comorbidity. Current research describes a wide heterogeneity of patient populations, making it difficult to suggest a general treatment regimen and stressing the need of an individualized approach to decision making. Early focus-oriented intervention and antibiotic coverage tailored to the individual patient and hospital is warranted.


ICU; intraabdominal infection; peritonitis; source control

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