An overview of the role of exclusive enteral nutrition for complicated Crohn's disease

Intest Res. 2019 Apr;17(2):171-176. doi: 10.5217/ir.2018.00079. Epub 2018 Dec 3.


The role and efficacy of exclusive enteral nutrition (EEN) in the treatment of luminal Crohn's disease (CD) has been well established over the last 2 decades. Consequently, in many centers nutritional therapy is now considered first line therapy in the induction of remission of active CD. However, the use of nutritional therapy in complicated CD has yet to be fully determined. This article aimed to review case reports and clinical trials published in the last decade that have considered and evaluated nutritional therapy in the setting of complicated CD in children and adults. Published literature focusing upon the use of nutritional therapy as part of medical therapy in the management of complicated CD were identified and reviewed. Although there continue to be various interventions utilized for complicated CD, the currently available literature demonstrates that nutritional therapies, especially EEN, have important roles in the management of these complex scenarios. Further assessments, involving large numbers of patients managed with consistent approaches, are required to further substantiate these roles.

Keywords: Child; Crohn disease; Intestinal fistula; Intestinal obstruction; Nutrition.