A series of treatment trials, involving food balances based on determination of fat coefficient absorption, nitrogen faecal loss, and daily faecal weight, was performed in 82 patients with cystic fibrosis. Results showed that a conventional powdered pancreatic extract (Pancrex V) required a high dosage to achieve reasonable improvement in fat and nitrogen absorption (200 mg/kg body weight/day on average) and rarely restored digestion to normal. Bicarbonate (5.2 g/m2 body surface/day) slightly enhanced the enzymatic activity of the powdered extract, this being more apparent in those with more severe steatorrhoea. There was no advantage in providing the extract in microgranules protected by cellulose acetatephthalate. A product based on fungal lipase and protease (Krebsilasi) proved to be ineffective in correcting fat and protein absorption. The two recent products prepared in pH sensitive microspheres (Pancrex V microspheres and Pancreas-Prolipase) had similar advantages in digestive activity. Compared with the traditional preparations, they offered a number of practical advantages, including a smaller number of capsules (particularly Pancrex V microspheres) and improved palatability.
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