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Trauma Surg Acute Care Open. 2017 Sep 3;2(1):e000063. doi: 10.1136/tsaco-2016-000063. eCollection 2017.

Open abdomen critical care management principles: resuscitation, fluid balance, nutrition, and ventilator management.

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School of Medicine, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.
Department of Surgery, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.


The term "open abdomen" refers to a surgically created defect in the abdominal wall that exposes abdominal viscera. Leaving an abdominal cavity temporarily open has been well described for several indications, including damage control surgery and abdominal compartment syndrome. Although beneficial in certain patients, the act of keeping an abdominal cavity open has physiologic repercussions that must be recognized and managed during postoperative care. This review article describes these issues and provides guidelines for the critical care physician managing a patient with an open abdomen.


abdominal compartment syndrome; early closure; open abdomen management; ventilator

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