Epidemiology and Diagnosis of Gastroparesis in the United States: A Population-based Study

J Clin Gastroenterol. 2020 Jan;54(1):50-54. doi: 10.1097/MCG.0000000000001231.


Goals: We aimed to establish the epidemiological characteristics and documentation of diagnostic workup for gastroparesis (GP).

Background: No study has used a national database to evaluate the prevalence, demographics, and associated comorbid conditions of GP, and document rates of proper diagnosis.

Materials and methods: This was a cross-sectional population-based study using the Explorys Platform to determine the prevalence of GP in a large and diverse population highly representative of the US population and to examine the diagnostic approach of GP. Data collected were individual characteristics from electronic medical records (EMRs) included age, ethnicity/race, sex, diagnostic report for esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) and gastric emptying study (GES).

Results: A total of 43,827,910 medical records were surveyed (1999 to 2014), of which 69,950 had a diagnosis of GP, yielding an overall prevalence of 0.16%. We identified 249,930 EMRs with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM), and 2,940,280 EMR's with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), of which 11,470 (4.59%) and 38,670 (1.31%) EMR's had concurrent GP, respectively. The remainder 19,810 EMRs with a diagnosis of GP were classified as having idiopathic GP. In all three subgroups, women and Caucasians had the highest prevalence of GP. The diagnosis of GP was confirmed by both GES and EGD in 9,950 of patients (14.22%). For patients with T1DM, T2DM, or idiopathic GP, GP was confirmed by both diagnostic tests in 16.8%, 14.0%, and 13.2%, respectively.

Conclusions: Our estimated rates of prevalence of GP in T1DM and T2DM indicate that GP is not a common clinical complication in these populations. Majority of EMRs that indicated a diagnosis of GP did not include any documentation of definitive diagnostic testing (EGD and/or GES).

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Comorbidity
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / epidemiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Endoscopy, Digestive System
  • Female
  • Gastric Emptying
  • Gastroparesis / diagnosis*
  • Gastroparesis / epidemiology*
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult