Rapid gastric emptying, rather than delayed gastric emptying, might provoke functional dyspepsia

J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2011 Apr;26 Suppl 3:75-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1746.2011.06627.x.


It has been suggested that there could be three possible mechanisms of gastric dysfunction in patients with FD: (i) delayed gastric emptying, (ii) impaired gastric accommodation of food intake, and (iii) hypersensitivity to gastric distention. Postprandial fullness seems to be the most severe symptom in patients who report aggravation of their symptoms after meals. Therefore, it has been assumed that delayed gastric emptying and consequent prolonged antral distension could reduce hunger, increase satiety, and even cause gastric discomfort, all of which would pose a significant barrier to adequate nutrition. We previously reported that postprandial water intake inhibits gastric antral motility along with an increase of cholecystokinin (CCK) in normal subjects. We assumed that the rapid increase of CCK after water intake was initiated by a feedback mechanism related to the inflow of fatty chyme into the duodenum that inhibits gastric antral activity. This duodeno-gastric interaction is known as the "duodenal break." We also reported that total gastric emptying was more rapid after the intake of a high-viscosity liquid meal than after a low-viscosity meal, because the low-viscosity liquid meal inhibits gastric emptying after rapid initial inflow into the duodenum. Considering these results, we hypothesized that rapid gastric emptying, rather than delayed gastric emptying, could be a cause of FD. In some patients with postprandial distress syndrome (PDS), we have found a significant correspondence between PDS-related dyspepsia and accelerated gastric emptying in the early postprandial period. It is worth emphasizing that the duodenum and the duodeno-gastric interaction (duodenal break) could have an important role in the pathophysiology of FD. We consider that rapid gastric emptying might be a more important factor than delayed gastric emptying in patients with FD.

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / etiology
  • Abdominal Pain / physiopathology
  • Cholecystokinin / metabolism
  • Diet
  • Drinking
  • Duodenum / physiopathology
  • Dyspepsia / complications
  • Dyspepsia / metabolism
  • Dyspepsia / physiopathology*
  • Eating
  • Feedback, Physiological
  • Gastric Emptying*
  • Humans
  • Postprandial Period
  • Viscosity


  • Cholecystokinin