Obesity Surgery

, Volume 19, Issue 11, pp 1515–1521 | Cite as

Scintigraphic Evaluation of Gastric Emptying in Obese Patients Submitted to Sleeve Gastrectomy Compared to Normal Subjects

  • Italo BraghettoEmail author
  • Cristóbal Davanzo
  • Owen Korn
  • Attila Csendes
  • Héctor Valladares
  • Eduardo Herrera
  • Patricio Gonzalez
  • Karin Papapietro
Clinical Research



Sleeve gastrectomy (SG) has been accepted as an option for surgical treatment for obesity. This operation could be associated with motor gastric dysfunction and abnormal gastric emptying. The purpose of this prospective study is to present the results of gastric emptying to liquids and solids using scintigraphy in patients who underwent SG compared to normal subjects.


Twenty obese patients were submitted to laparoscopic SG and were compared to 18 normal subjects. Gastric emptying of liquids and solids was measured by scintigraphic technique. Results were expressed as half time of gastric emptying and the percentage of retention at 20, 30, and 60 min for liquids and at 60, 90, and 120 min for solids.


In the group of operated patients, 70% of them (n = 14) presented accelerated emptying for liquids and 75% (n = 15) for solids compared to 22.2% and 27.7%, respectively, in the control group. The half time of gastric emptying (T1/2) in patients submitted to SG both for liquids and solids were significantly more accelerated compared to the control group (34.9 ± 24.6 vs 13.6 ± 11.9 min for liquids and 78 ± 15.01 vs 38.3 ± 18.77 min for solids; p < 0.01). The gastric emptying for liquids expressed as the percentage of retention at 20, 30, and 60 min was 30.0 ± 0.25%, 15.4 ± 0.18%, and 5.7 ± 0.10%, respectively, in operated patients, significantly less than the control subjects (p < 0.001). For solids, the percentage of retention at 60, 90, and 120 min was 56 ± 28%, 34 ± 22%, and 12 ± 8%, respectively, for controls, while it was 25.3 ± 0.20%, 9 ± 0.12%, and 3 ± 0.05%, respectively, in operated patients (p < 001).


Gastric emptying after SG is accelerated either for liquids as well as for solids in the majority of patients. These results could be taken in consideration for the dietary indications after surgery and could play a significant role in the definitive results during the late follow-up.


Obesity Sleeve gastrectomy Gastric emptying 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Italo Braghetto
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cristóbal Davanzo
    • 1
  • Owen Korn
    • 1
  • Attila Csendes
    • 1
  • Héctor Valladares
    • 1
  • Eduardo Herrera
    • 2
  • Patricio Gonzalez
    • 2
  • Karin Papapietro
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryHospital Clínico Universidad de ChileSantiagoChile
  2. 2.Nuclear Medicine UnitHospital Clínico Universidad de ChileSantiagoChile

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