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Clin Radiol. 1985 May;36(3):275-8.

The pathogenesis of post-irradiation chronic diarrhoea: measurement of SeHCAT and B12 absorption for differential diagnosis determines treatment.


The absorption of vitamin B12 and of a synthetic bile acid analogue 75SeHCAT was measured simultaneously in 26 patients presenting with persistent diarrhoea following pelvic irradiation for treatment of carcinoma of the cervix. Four groups were identified, namely patients with isolated bile acid malabsorption, patients with isolated B12 malabsorption, patients with malabsorption of both and those with malabsorption of neither compound. The therapeutic implications are different for each. Measurement of B12 and bile acid absorption comprises an important new test for the management of patients with this disabling and unpleasant complication of radiotherapy.

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