Gastric emptying and intestinal transit of pancreatic enzyme supplements in cystic fibrosis

Arch Dis Child. 1999 Feb;80(2):149-52. doi: 10.1136/adc.80.2.149.


Objective: To investigate gastric emptying and intestinal transit of pelleted pancreatin in relation to food boluses.

Methods: Dual isotope scintigraphy combined with breath hydrogen sampling was used to track the concurrent gastric emptying and intestinal transit of 111indium labelled microspheres and a 99mtechnetium labelled tin colloid test meal. Twelve pancreatic insufficient cystic fibrosis patients aged 5 to 38 years performed the study.

Results: 50% gastric emptying times showed patient to patient variation. The mean discrepancy in 50% gastric emptying times between the two labels was > 67 minutes. Mean small bowel transit time for the food bolus was prolonged at 3.6 minutes. A significant correlation was seen between weight standard deviation score and 50% emptying time for pancreatin (r = +0.73).

Conclusion: Gastric mixing of food and pancreatin may be limited by rapid emptying of microspheres. Patients with high dosage requirements could benefit from changing the pattern of their pancreatin supplementation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Breath Tests
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cystic Fibrosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Cystic Fibrosis / physiopathology*
  • Cystic Fibrosis / therapy
  • Gastric Emptying*
  • Gastrointestinal Transit*
  • Humans
  • Indium Radioisotopes
  • Lipase / administration & dosage*
  • Microspheres
  • Pancreatin / administration & dosage*
  • Radionuclide Imaging
  • Stomach / diagnostic imaging
  • Technetium Compounds
  • Tin Compounds


  • Indium Radioisotopes
  • Technetium Compounds
  • Tin Compounds
  • technetium Tc 99m tin colloid
  • Pancreatin
  • Lipase