Gastroesophageal Reflux and Gastric Emptying
Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) may be defined as a dysfunction of the distal esophagus causing return of gastric contents into the esophagus.13 GER is a rather common problem during infancy, with an incidence estimated as 1 in 500 infants. The common clinical manifestations of GER can be attributed to the regurgitation of acidic gastric contents into the esophagus. In reviewing the symptomatology associated with GER, Weissbluth28 summarized the clinical features in 1070 children with GER. Vomiting occurred in two-thirds of the children, usually beginning at birth, and frequently associated with loss of appetite resulting in weight loss or failure to thrive. Twenty-eight percent of the children exhibited bleeding secondary to esophagitis caused by erosion of the lower esophageal mucosa. Nineteen percent of the patients had associated respiratory symptomatology.27 Symptoms frequently will mimic those of allergic bronchitis, asthma, or recurrent episodes of pneumonitis. The findings of airway disease in association with reflux do not suggest a causal relationship. However, a series reported by Berquist et al.3 revealed a significant improvement in respiratory symptomatology upon medical or surgical therapy for GER.
KeywordsGastric Emptying Gastroesophageal Reflux Pediatric Nuclear Medicine Acid Reflux Test Respiratory Symptomatology
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