Gastric emptying and motility: assessment with MR imaging--preliminary observations

Radiology. 1998 Apr;207(1):33-40. doi: 10.1148/radiology.207.1.9530296.


Purpose: To evaluate a magnetic resonance (MR) imaging method for simultaneous assessment of gastric emptying and motility.

Materials and methods: Gastric emptying and motility were measured in nine volunteers after ingestion of a liquid meal. A specially designed MR imaging protocol was used that allowed simultaneous assessment of gastric emptying (spatial resolution, 1.5 mm; corrected for gastric secretion volume) and gastric motility (temporal resolution, 1.2 seconds; spatial resolution, 3.1 mm). To evaluate the ability to detect small changes in gastric motor activity with findings from this method, the influence of a prokinetic agent (loxiglumide) on gastric emptying and motility was tested in five volunteers.

Results: Each contraction could be individually visualized at MR imaging. Administration of loxiglumide resulted in decreased gastric half-emptying time (mean +/- 1 standard error of the mean, 88.1 minutes +/- 6.3 for the placebo and 39.1 minutes +/- 6.7 for loxiglumide) and increased gastric motility (contraction frequency, 2.26 contractions per minute +/- 0.15 for the placebo and 3.04 per minute +/- 0.04 for loxiglumide).

Conclusion: MR imaging makes it feasible to study gastric emptying and gastric motility and to determine the influence of drugs on gastric motor activity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Contrast Media
  • Female
  • Gastric Emptying
  • Gastrointestinal Motility*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging* / methods
  • Male
  • Meglumine
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Proglumide / analogs & derivatives
  • Proglumide / pharmacology
  • Stomach / anatomy & histology
  • Stomach / physiology*


  • Contrast Media
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Meglumine
  • loxiglumide
  • Proglumide
  • gadoterate meglumine