Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 39, Issue 10, pp 2209–2215 | Cite as

Gastrointestinal transit through esophagus, stomach, small and large intestine in patients with progressive systemic sclerosis

  • M. Wegener
  • R. J. Adamek
  • B. Wedmann
  • M. Jergas
  • P. Altmeyer
Motility, Nerve-Gut Interactions, Hormones, And Receptors


Liquid esophageal transit and gastric emptying, mouth-to-cecum transit, and whole gut transit of a solid-liquid meal were measured in 14 patients with PSS, 16 control subjects (esophageal transit), and 20 control subjects (gastrointestinal transit), respectively, by using scintigraphic techniques, the hydrogen breath test, and stool markers. In patients with PSS, the glucose hydrogen breath test for detection of small intestinal overgrowth was performed and various gastrointestinal symptoms were determined. Esophageal transit and gastric emptying were significantly prolonged in PSS patients with 11 of 14 PSS patients (79%) disclosing delayed esophageal transit and eight of 14 PSS patients (57%) disclosing delayed gastric emptying. All PSS patients with prolonged gastric emptying also had delayed esophageal transit and there was a significant positive correlation between esophageal transit and gastric emptying (r=0.696,P<0.01). No significant differences between PSS patients and controls were detected concerning mouth-to-cecum transit and whole gut transit, but abnormally delayed mouth-to-cecum transit was found in four of 10 PSS patients (40%) and abnormally prolonged whole gut transit was detected in three of 13 PSS patients (23%). Small bacterial overgrowth was diagnosed in three of 14 PSS patients (21%). Delayed esophageal transit and gastric emptying were associated with dysphagia, retrosternal pain, and epigastric fullness, while prolonged whole gut transit was associated with constipation. It is concluded that delayed gastric emptying is frequently associated with esophageal transit disorders in PSS patients and may be one important factor for the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease in these patients.

Key Words

progressive systemic sclerosis esophageal transit gastric emptying intestinal transit gastrointestinal symptoms small intestinal bacterial overgrowth 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Wegener
    • 1
  • R. J. Adamek
    • 1
  • B. Wedmann
    • 1
  • M. Jergas
    • 1
  • P. Altmeyer
    • 1
  1. 1.From the Departments of Medicine, Radiology and Dermatology, St. Josef-HospitalRuhr-University BochumBochumGermany

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