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Dig Dis Sci. 2000 Aug;45(8):1509-16.

Determinants of occurrence and volume of transpyloric flow during gastric emptying of liquids in dogs: importance of vagal input.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


The precise factors and their relative contributions that lead to individual flow pulses across the pylorus during liquid gastric emptying remain unclear. Our objective was to determine the factors leading to individual flow pulses, their relative contributions and the role of the vagus nerve in their modulation. Proximal gastric tone had a strong positive correlation with the volume of the corresponding transpyloric flow pulse whereas pyloric tone had an inverse correlation. Antral contractions were associated with the presence but not the volume of the pulse. Acute vagal blockade retarded emptying via loss of proximal gastric tone and increased outflow resistance and loss of propagating antral pressure waves. In conclusion, the major determinants of the volume of pulsatile transpyloric flow are proximal gastric and pyloric tone. The vagus nerve plays a key role in regulating both proximal gastric and pyloric tone as well as moderating propagating antral contractions.

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