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Gastrointest Endosc. 1998 Oct;48(4):395-401.

Development of a topographic analysis system for manometric studies in the gastrointestinal tract.

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  • 1Division of Gastroenterology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri, USA.



Intraluminal pressures from the gastrointestinal tract are conventionally analyzed from a set of two-dimensional tracings. We hypothesized that more information could be extracted by considering spatial relationships of pressure data.


A system was developed for recording pressure from up to 21 sites and analyzing the results using two- and three-dimensional plotting methods connecting data in space as well as time. Esophageal pressures were measured in 10 volunteers. Data were displayed as three-dimensional contour plots, surface plots, or animated transformations of the pressure wave as it traveled axially in the direction of bolus movement.


Subjects tolerated catheter placement, and all analysis methods (conventional and topographic) were successfully completed in each case. At least 80% of the esophageal body and one sphincter could be sampled with the catheter in either a proximal or distal recording position.


A topographic analysis system is available for studying time and space relationships of pressure data. These novel techniques have the potential to provide greater insight into normal and abnormal gastrointestinal motor function than conventional manometric methods.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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