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Gastroenterology. 1977 Feb;72(2):206-11.

Gastric emptying of solid food in normal man and after subtotal gastrectomy and truncal vagotomy with pyloroplasty.


Alterations in gastric emptying are considered contributory to many sequelae of peptic ulcer surgery. The application of a validated method of firmly tagging solid food has enabled the measurement of the rates and patterns of gastric emptying in normal subjects, subtotal gastrectomy, and vagotomy and pyloroplasty (V&P). Normal persons emptied with a linear pattern at a mean rate of 27.96% per hr. Subtotal gastrectomy patients showed up to three phases in their emptying pattern, which, over all, approximated an exponential pattern with a mean rate constant of 0.030 min-1 and calculated t1/2 of 23.3 min. V&P subjects divided into two groups: (1) slow emptying with a linear pattern and mean rate of 17.64% per hr; (2) rapid emptying with exponential pattern and mean rate constant of 0.039 min-1, t1/2 of 17.7 min. The slow gastric emptying rate and slow passage of chyme through the small intestine in one-half of the V&P group presumably allows greater efficiency of digestion and absorption and may account for the over-all less severe nutritional disturbances after V&P.

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