Background: Rumination is defined by effortless regurgitation within seconds or minutes of ingested food. The aim of this study was to determine the high-resolution esophageal manometry (HREM) pattern in children with rumination syndrome.
Methods: HREM was evaluated in 15 pediatric patients with rumination syndrome according to the Rome criteria and compared with 15 controls. Primary rumination was defined as a clinical rumination episode associated with a rise of gastric pressure above 30 mmHg. Secondary rumination was defined as a clinical rumination episode associated with a rise of gastric pressure above 30 mmHg during a transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation (TLESR).
Results: Ninety-two episodes of rumination were demonstrated during HREM study in 12 of the 15 patients (80%; 1-29 episodes per patient; median intragastric pressure 49.6 mmHg). Primary rumination occurred in 3 patients and secondary rumination in 5 patients. One patient had primary and secondary rumination episodes. In 3 patients, classification of rumination episodes was not possible due to repetitive swallowing leading to lower esophageal sphincter relaxation. In the control group, no episodes of rumination occurred. The sensitivity and the specificity of the HREM study (association of a clinical rumination episode with a rise in gastric pressure >30 mmHg) to confirm the diagnosis of rumination were 80% and 100%, respectively.
Conclusions: HREM allows confirming diagnosis of rumination syndrome and to differentiate between primary and secondary rumination in the presence of objective rumination episodes. Further research is needed to study whether HREM results may influence treatment and outcome of children with rumination syndrome.