High-resolution Esophageal Manometry for Rumination Syndrome.

Briefly noted: While in most cases, rumination syndrome does not require manometry for diagnosis, in cases of uncertainty, it can be helpful.  A recent retrospective study (FR Grunder, A Aspirot, C Faure. JPGN 2017; 65: 627-32) highlights the utility of high-resolution esophageal manometry (HREM) in the diagnosis of rumination syndrome using 15 patients with rumination and 15 control patients.

Background: The sensitivity of HREM can be lower in a clinical setting as many “subjects with rumination are often able to tolerate the test meal during the manometry study with minimal or no symptoms.”

HREM also helps determine whether rumination is primary, secondary or if there is supragastric belch-associated rumination.

  • Primary rumination indicates that abdominal pressure increases before the retrograde flow
  • Secondary rumination indicates that abdominal pressure increases after a reflux event
  • Supragastric belch-associated rumination indicates an association of air inflow (detected with combined impedance) in the esophagus immediately followed by a rumination event

Key finding from this study:

  • HREM had a sensitivity and specificity of 80% and 100% respectively to confirm the diagnosis of rumination.  “the association of a clinical rumination episode with a rise in gastric pressure >30 mmHg seems to be specific for the diagnosis of rumination syndrome in children.”

My take: Manometry is usually not needed for the diagnosis of rumination syndrome but does help explain the pathophysiology.

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