Vomiting and gastroesophageal motor activity in children with disorders of the central nervous system.J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1998 Jan; 26(1):56-63.JP
Vomiting is common in children with disorders of the central nervous system (CNS) and is usually ascribed to gastroesophageal reflux (GER). However, recent acquisitions on the pathophysiology of vomiting suggest that the dysmotility of the foregut may be more widespread.
Fifty-five children with CNS disorders, 50 of whom suffered from retching and/or vomiting (18 following fundoplication) were studied. We assessed GER by 24 hour pH monitoring and endoscopy, gastric electrical activity by electrogastrography, and gastric half-emptying time (T1/2) of a milk meal be electrical impedance tomography.
Of the 50 vomiting patients, 29 had GER (reflux index of 5.7%-87.4%; controls: < 5%), and 31 had gastric dysrhythmias (12 tachyarrhythmia at 5.5-11.2 cpm, 4 bradyarrhythmia at 1.7-1.9 cpm, 15 unstable electrical activity; controls; 2.2-4.0 cpm). Sixteen patients had GER and gastric dysrhythmias. Eleven of 18 patients with fundoplication had gastric dysrhythmias. Gastric T1/2 was delayed in 12 of 13 patients with gastric dysrhythmia (6 with GER), versus 2 of 5 with GER alone. No abnormalities were detected in the 5 patients who did not suffer from vomiting.
Children with CNS disorders who vomit have abnormal gastric motility as often as GER. Following fundoplication, many patients continue to have symptoms possibly related to gastric dysrhythmias, the effects of which may be unmasked by fundoplication. Foregut dysmotility may be related to abnormal modulation of the enteric nervous system by the CNS or to involvement of the enteric nervous system by the same process affecting the brain.