Repeat surgical bowel lengthening with the STEP procedure

Ane M. Andres, Jon Thompson, Wendy Grant, Jean Botha, Brandy Sunderman, Dean Antonson, Alan Langnas, Debra Sudan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND. Feasibility of repeat lengthening has been demonstrated in animals, but in humans, none of the three clinical case reports have achieved enteral autonomy after secondary lengthening with serial transverse enteroplasty (STEP). PATIENTS AND METHODS. Institutional Review Board approved retrospective review of a single center series of repeat intestinal lengthening after prior Bianchi lengthening or STEP. Outcome measures examined include patient survival, weaning from parenteral nutrition, and need for intestinal transplantation. RESULTS. Repeat lengthening with STEP was performed 16 times in 14 patients including 2 adults and 7 male patients after prior Bianchi (n=7) and prior STEP (n=7). Median time after initial lengthening to reSTEP was 12 months (2 months-15 years). Median remnant bowel length before initial lengthening was 35 cm (15-110), before reSTEP was 56.5 cm (27-100) and final length after reSTEP was 90 cm (39-120). Survival is 100% with a median follow-up of 14.5 months (1-65 months). Discontinuation of parenteral nutrition (PN) after reSTEP was achieved in 6 of 14 (43%) patients at a median of 3 months (0.5-13 months) after reSTEP. Intestinal transplant salvage was performed in four patients at 7, 9, 13 months, and 4.6 years, respectively, after reSTEP. All four of those undergoing intestinal transplantation have also subsequently discontinued PN. CONCLUSIONS. Repeat lengthening is technically feasible after either of the available surgical lengthening procedures (Bianchi and STEP). In the stable patient, who is unable to wean from PN, repeat lengthening led to discontinuation of TPN in almost half of these carefully selected patients and does not preclude intestinal transplantation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1294-1299
Number of pages6
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 2008


  • Bowel lengthening procedure
  • Serial transverse enteroplasty
  • Short bowel syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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