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Dig Dis Sci. 2010 Apr;55(4):983-7. doi: 10.1007/s10620-009-0818-0. Epub 2009 May 19.

Efficacy of gastric electrical stimulation in improving functional vomiting in patients with normal gastric emptying.

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  • 1Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS, USA.


The objective of this study is to evaluate the utility of gastric electrical stimulation (GES) in the subgroup of patients with refractory nausea and vomiting in the presence of normal gastric emptying. Eighteen patients (15 females) underwent GES implantation for dyspeptic symptoms in the presence of normal gastric emptying. Upper gastrointestinal (UGI) symptom score, health-related quality of life (HR-QOL), nutritional status and weight, and medication use (prokinetics and antiemetics) were assessed at baseline and at 1 year after GES placement. Twelve patients (two males) were included in the final analysis. All patients had normal gastric emptying scintigraphy at baseline. After 1 year of GES, there was a significant reduction in the UGI symptom score from 18 to 10 (P = 0.001). The physical component score (PCS) of the HR-QOL was also significantly increased from 25 to 42 (P = 0.04). Gastric emptying actually became slower in 29% of those who repeated the test after 1 year. No adverse events related to GES placement were recorded. Results of our study suggest that GES improves dyspeptic symptoms in patients with medically refractory nausea and vomiting independent of its effect on gastric emptying and could be considered as a potential therapy in this clinical setting.

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