Microvillus Inclusion Disease

Sometimes it is hard to remember the days when we didn't know what microvilli, bilirubin, TPN, Omegaven, or a Broviac were. When people ask us what Microvillus Inclusion Disease is I have a feeling most times people walk away with our answer being more confused than they were before they asked. For that reason, we have posted an over simplified answer to this question here. If you would like to read more information, there are additional links below. Be warned, most of the information out there is highly technical and can be a bit depressing when it comes to prognosis.

What Microvillus Inclusion Disease means for Sam, in the most basic way, is that his intestines do not work properly. His intestines do not absorb nutrients like most people and he has to be supplied with all of his nutrition through an IV. In Sam's case this is done in a central line that starts in the center of his chest, tunnels under his skin to a vein in his neck and then travels down that vein to a spot close to his heart.

In slightly more detail, the cells in the intestine are normally lined with small hair like structures called microvilli. These structures are what do the actual absorbing of nutrients in your intestines.

More information:

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A much more technical description of Sam's disease can be found here: