[Intestinal permeability in alcoholic patients without liver damage].Rev Med Chil. 1997 Jun; 125(6):653-8.RM
Chronic alcoholism may increase intestinal permeability. However, there are few studies of intestinal permeability in chronic alcoholic subjects.
To study intestinal permeability in chronic alcoholic patients without clinical evidences of liver damage, during early abstinence, and in normal subjects.
Thirty seven male subjects were studied, 18 controls and 19 alcoholics. All subjects underwent an anthropometric assessment and dietary history. Lactulose/mannitol test was performed during the third day of abstinence in alcoholics. After an 8 hour overnight fast, subjects drank 200 ml of a solution containing 5 g lactulose and 5 g mannitol. Subsequently, urine was collected during the following 5 hours, where both sugars were measured by gas chromatography.
Median values of lactulose/mannitol ratio were similar in alcoholics and controls (0.011, range 0.005-0.071 vs 0.014, range 0.005-0.027 respectively). However, absolute urinary excretion of both lactulose and mannitol was lower in alcoholics. There was no relationship between nutritional status and urinary excretion of lactulose, mannitol or lactulose/mannitol ratio.
In these alcoholic patients, no changes were observed in intestinal permeability.