Gastroparesis

Also known as: delayed gastric emptying.

What is gastroparesis?

Gastroparesis occurs if the muscles and/or nerves of the stomach do not move food properly, causing the stomach to take too long to empty. As a result, food sits longer than usual in the stomach, producing symptoms.

What causes gastroparesis?

Gastroparesis can occur as a complication of diabetes; from low functioning of the thyroid gland; as part of a condition called lupus; from the aftermath of an infection of the stomach; as a complication of some surgeries on the stomach or its nerve supply; as part of illnesses that weaken muscle and nerve function throughout the body; or as part of a condition called pseudo-obstruction that is associated with abnormal muscle and/or nerve function within the gastrointestinal tract per se.

Not uncommonly, the cause of gastroparesis is unknown.

What are the symptoms of gastroparesis?

Common symptoms of gastroparesis include stomach pain, bloating, lack of appetite, and acid reflux. These may become worse after eating high-fiber, greasy or rich foods.

What are gastroparesis care options?

Gastroparesis cannot be cured. Dietary changes; certain medications; and therapies such as botox injections or electrical pacing of the stomach musculature can help with the symptoms of gastroparesis.


Reviewed by: Shifra A Koyfman, MD

This page was last updated on: September 09, 2020 11:19 AM

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