A patient has sustained a severe burn injury and is thought to have an impaired intestinal mucosal barrier. Since this patient is considered at an increased risk for infection, what intervention will best assist in avoiding increased intestinal permeability and prevent early endotoxin translocation?

Answer Explanation: If the intestinal mucosa receives some type of protection against permeability change, infection could be avoided. Early enteral feeding is one step to help avoid this increased intestinal permeability and prevent early endotoxin translocation. Antibiotics are seldom prescribed prophylactically because of the risk of promoting resistant strains of bacteria. A bowel cleansing procedure would not be ordered for this patient. The administration of stool softeners would not assist in avoiding increased intestinal permeability and prevent early endotoxin translocation.

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