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Dig Dis Sci. 2000 Jul;45(7):1281-4.

Colonic motor function in humans is not affected by gender.

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  • 1Department of Gastroenterology, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Ohio, USA.


Functional abdominal pain, including the irritable bowel syndrome, is more common in females. Our aim was to determine if differences in motility or biomechanical properties of the colon could account for this gender difference. In 18 healthy subjects (nine males), a catheter assembly incorporating a balloon and perfused side holes, connected to a barostat, was positioned in the left colon. The system was used to determine compliance, sensation in response to phasic balloon distension, and changes in motor activity and tone in response to a meal. There was no significant difference in any of these variables between males and females. We conclude that there is no gender difference in colonic motor function or sensation to balloon distension. The increased prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome in females may be related to psychosocial factors rather than differences in colonic motor function.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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