Pilot study of pathophysiology of constipation among community diabetics

Dig Dis Sci. 1998 Nov;43(11):2373-8. doi: 10.1023/a:1026657426396.


We aimed to compare gastrointestinal transit and defecatory function in a random sample of people with or without diabetes mellitus in a US community who reported constipation or laxative use. In this pilot study we measured: gastric, small bowel, and colonic transit by scintigraphy; vector manometry of anal sphincters at rest and during squeeze; defecatory dynamics by balloon expulsion test; and scintigraphic measurement of anorectal angle at rest and during defecation. Autonomic function tests were performed in diabetics. Diabetics with constipation had a higher prevalence of abnormal evacuation or prolonged colonic transit during the first 24 hr than controls (P = 0.07): three had prolonged 24-hr colonic transit, and three abnormal evacuation. Among constipated controls, only one had anismus. Overall, diabetics had slower colonic transit during the first 24 hr than nondiabetics (P < 0.05). Community diabetics who experience constipation or use laxatives have a greater prevalence of delayed 24-hr colonic transit or evacuatory dysfunction than community controls.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anal Canal / diagnostic imaging
  • Anal Canal / physiopathology
  • Constipation / diagnostic imaging
  • Constipation / etiology
  • Constipation / physiopathology*
  • Defecation
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / diagnostic imaging
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / physiopathology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / diagnostic imaging
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology*
  • Dietary Fiber / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Transit
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Manometry / methods
  • Manometry / statistics & numerical data
  • Middle Aged
  • Pilot Projects
  • Radionuclide Imaging
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Technetium
  • Time Factors


  • Dietary Fiber
  • Technetium