NEJM: Functional Dyspepsia

A recent NEJM had a concise review of functional dyspepsia (Talley NJ, Ford AC. NEJM 2015; 373: 1853-63).

With regard to functional dyspepsia in adults, the authors note that using the Rome III criteria, the global prevalence is between 5% and 11%.

While symptoms do not reliably distinguish organic and functional dyspepsia, they note that “with a relatively low rate of identification of organic disease, it is neither desirable nor realistic to perform this test [upper gastrointestinal endoscopy] in all patients with dyspepsia.”

Their review suggests several criteria to consider to help determine who needs endoscopy including age >55 yrs, GI bleeding, dysphagia, persistent vomiting, unintentional weight loss, family history of gastric or esophageal cancer, and iron-deficiency anemia.

With regard to workup, they suggest testing for H pylori non invasively with either breath testing or stool antigen testing.  The review covers treatment approaches including acid suppression (“effect is modest”), antidepressants (“tricyclic antidepressants…should be preferred over selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitors”), prokinetic agents, psychological treatments, and complementary approaches.  Figure 3 provides a helpful algorithm.

With regard to prognosis, “approximately 15 to 20% of people with functional dyspepsia have persistent symptoms and 50% have resolution of symptoms; in the remaining 30 to 35% of patients symptoms will fluctuate and meet the criteria for another functional gastrointestinal disorder.”

Briefly noted: “Acute Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders are Associated with Impaired Gastric Accommodation in Patients with Functional Dyspepsia” HG Ly et al. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol 2015; 13: 1584-91.

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3 thoughts on “NEJM: Functional Dyspepsia

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