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Am J Physiol. 1999 Nov;277(5 Pt 1):G983-92.

Relationship between terminal ileal pressure waves and propagating proximal colonic pressure waves.

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  • 1Department of Gastroenterology, The St. George Hospital, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales 2217, Australia.


The relationship between propagating distal ileal and proximal colonic motor patterns has not been systematically examined in humans. Our aim was to define the relationships, if any, between prolonged propagating contractions or discrete clustered contractions and cecal propagating sequences using multiple manometric recording sites spanning the distal ileum and unprepared colon. In 14 healthy volunteers, a 17-lumen-perfused silicon catheter was positioned pernasally such that at least three recording sites lay in the ileum and the remainder in the colon. Intersidehole distance was 7.5 cm. In 271 h of recording, 30% of the terminal ileal propagating events was temporally associated with cecal propagating sequences. Significantly more prolonged propagating contractions (11 of 24, 46%; P = 0.02) were associated with cecal propagating sequences than were associated with ileal discrete clustered contractions (4 of 26, 15%). This trend was more pronounced at night. Of 159 cecal propagating sequences, 15 (9%) were preceded by an ileal propagating event. The remaining 91% was preceded by increased nonpropagating activity commencing 2 min before the cecal propagating sequence (P = 0.0002). We conclude that distal ileal propagating motor patterns are one stimulus for cecal propagating sequences, with the association being stronger for prolonged propagating contractions than for discrete clustered contractions.

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