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South Med J. 2005 Jul;98(7):693-7.

Pilot study on gastric electrical stimulation on surgery-associated gastroparesis: long-term outcome.

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  • 1University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS, USA.



Patients with postgastric surgery gastroparesis are often unresponsive to conventional medical therapy. Gastric electrical stimulation (GES) with the use of high-frequency and low-energy neural stimulation is an approved technique for patients with idiopathic and diabetic gastroparesis.


We hypothesized that GES would improve symptoms, health resource utilization, and gastric emptying in six patients with postsurgical gastroparesis from a variety of surgical procedures. Patients were evaluated by means of the following criteria: symptoms, health-related quality of life, and gastric emptying tests at baseline over time.


All patients noted improvements after device implantation for up to 46 months: the frequency score for weekly vomiting went from a baseline of 3.2 down to 0.4 immediately after treatment before settling at 1.4 by the long-term follow up. Total gastrointestinal symptom score went from 36.5 at baseline down to 12.3 before settling at 20.5 at long-term follow up. Improvements were also seen in health-related quality of life and solid and liquid gastric emptying.


We conclude that GES is associated with clinical improvements in this group of patients with either postsurgical or surgery-associated gastroparesis. This pilot study with long-term outcomes offers evidence for a new therapy for otherwise refractory patients with gastroparesis associated with previous surgery.

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