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February 1984

Effects of Vitamin A and Beta Carotene on Intra-abdominal Sepsis

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Surgery (Drs Demetriou, Franco, Bark, Rettura, Seifter, and Levenson) and Biochemistry (Dr Seifter), Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, NY.

Arch Surg. 1984;119(2):161-165. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1984.01390140027005

• Vitamin A may play a role systemically and locally in controlling intra-abdominal sepsis. Adult male rats were divided into three groups. Group 1 ate a standard rat laboratory chow (not vitamin A deficient), group 2 ate the same chow supplemented with vitamin A, and group 3 ate the chow supplemented with beta carotene. All animals underwent cecal ligation, and the cecum was perforated either with a 27-gauge or an 18-gauge needle. Vitamin A dietary supplementation had a significant protective effect, which was manifested by improved survival in the animals whose cecum was perforated with an 18-gauge needle, prevention of postoperative hypothermia, maintenance of peripheral WBC counts at normal or above-normal values, and better localization of the intra-abdominal inflammatory process. Dietary supplementation with beta carotene had a lesser protective effect.

(Arch Surg 1984;119:161-165)

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