Research sheds light on debilitating stomach condition

(Medical Xpress)—Researchers from the Auckland Bioengineering Institute (ABI) have accurately mapped the patterns of abnormal gastric electrical activity that occurs during gastroparesis, a debilitating stomach condition.

Dr Gregory O'Grady, from the Auckland Gastrointestinal Research Group based at the ABI, says the new findings provide for the first time an accurate and detailed description of gastric dysrhythmias in humans that will help in the development of new diagnostic and treatment options.

Gastroparesis, which affects predominately women and 10 per cent of diabetics, is a medical condition that affects the stomach's ability to empty itself resulting in a reduced quality of life due to chronic nausea, vomiting, abdominal bloating and pain.

in the stomach or gastric dysrhythmias was known to be associated with gastroparesis but until now no accurate descriptions of these abnormalities existed, says Dr O'Grady.

"This is because previous research had been impeded due to there being no adequate methods to investigate gastric ," he says.

The research project involved surgeons, engineers and biomedical scientists from The University of Auckland, the Mayo Clinic in the US, and The University of Mississippi.

The Gastrointestinal Group's research, which was published in the prestigious international medical journal Gastroenterology, required several years of technical development.

"We developed new clinical devices consisting of sheets of hundreds of that could be laid over the stomach to precisely track electrical patterns during surgery. A new for processing these patterns also had to be developed by the research team, says Dr O'Grady.

"Gastroparesis is a devastating disease that is particularly difficult to diagnose and treat, and its causes have been poorly understood. Our research provides significant new insights into the disease, and opens the door to advanced new treatment options such as the use of gastric pacemakers, he says.

"We hope that over the next few years our devices will evolve into routine clinical tools for diagnosing gastroparesis as well as other significant disorders of function," says Dr O'Grady.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Pacemaker in stomach helps against vomiting

Mar 29, 2010

People with severe stomach disorders can sometimes suffer from chronic vomiting. This symptom can be treated with electrical impulses from a pacemaker in the stomach. A new method enables patients who could benefit from this ...

Carbon monoxide reverses diabetic gastric problem in mice

Jun 01, 2009

Mayo Clinic researchers have shown that very low doses of inhaled carbon monoxide in diabetic mice reverses the condition known as gastroparesis or delayed stomach emptying, a common and painful complication for many diabetic ...

Mayo Clinic discovery may help diabetic gastric problem

Sep 25, 2008

Mayo Clinic researchers have found what may provide a solution to one of the more troubling complications of diabetes -- delayed gastric emptying or gastroparesis. The researchers showed in animal models that a red blood ...

A potential treatment for gastric motility disorders

Jun 10, 2009

GES or pacing has been under investigation as a potential therapy for gastrointestinal motility disorders. Conventionally, GES is performed using a single pair of electrodes or single-channel GES. However, few studies have ...

Recommended for you

Ebola-hit Liberia delays school reopening

7 hours ago

Liberia's education ministry said on Sunday it had postponed by two weeks the reopening of the country's schools, which were closed six months ago to limit the spread of the Ebola virus.

Ebola: timeline of a ruthless killer

16 hours ago

Here are key dates in the current Ebola epidemic, the worst ever outbreak of the haemorrhagic fever which first surfaced in 1976 in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Ebola reveals shortcomings of African solidarity

Jan 31, 2015

As Africa's leaders meet in Ethiopia to discuss the Ebola crisis, expectations of firm action will be tempered by criticism over the continent's poor record in the early stages of the epidemic.

Second bird flu case confirmed in Canada

Jan 30, 2015

The husband of a Canadian who was diagnosed earlier this week with bird flu after returning from a trip to China has also tested positive for the virus, health officials said Friday.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.