Esophageal motility and psychiatric factors in functional dyspepsia patients with or without pain

Dig Dis Sci. 1999 Oct;44(10):2094-8. doi: 10.1023/a:1026690806330.


Subtypes of functional dyspepsia (FD), including refluxlike dyspepsia, ulcerlike dyspepsia, dysmotility-like dyspepsia, and nonspecific dyspepsia, have been described and are widely used clinically. However, these symptom patterns often overlap, and the terms are insufficient for indicating all FD symptoms. In this study, we divided 71 FD patients into two groups: patients with or without pain. Group I, the pain dyspepsia group, included patients in whom the main symptoms were epigastralgia and/or chest pain. Group II, the painless dyspepsia group, included patients without pain, in whom the symptoms were nausea, vomiting, and heartburn. We examined the relationship between esophageal function and psychiatric factors in the test groups and compared them with a control group. Of the FD patients, 19.7% [8 (25%) of 32 group I patients, 6 (15.4%) of 39 group II patients] had esophageal motility disorders, such as nutcracker esophagus and diffuse esophageal spasm. The LES pressure of group I was higher than that of group II by esophageal manometry (P < 0.05). In 17 (53.1%) of 32 group I patients and 31 (79.5%) of 39 group II patients, psychiatric disorders (38.0% had depressive disorder and 21.1% had an anxiety disorder) were diagnosed following DSM III-R criteria. Group II tended to be more depressive than group I (P = 0.0508). Psychological assessment scores, STAI-I and STAI-II, were higher in groups I and II than in the control group (P < 0.001). Long-term distress, anxiety, and depression seem to influence the symptoms of FD patients. Esophageal dysmotility may be an important functional abnormality of FD.

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / physiopathology*
  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Dyspepsia / physiopathology
  • Dyspepsia / psychology*
  • Esophageal Motility Disorders / physiopathology*
  • Esophageal Motility Disorders / psychology
  • Esophagogastric Junction / physiopathology
  • Esophagus / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Peristalsis
  • Psychological Tests