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Gastric Electrical Stimulation Decreases Food Intake

Posted: Tuesday, April 25, 2006

In a study of healthy volunteers, gastric electrical stimulation (GES) using endoscopically placed electrodes reduced the subjects' food and water intake and seemed to delay gastric empty.

The authors believe this approach could be a viable treatment for obesity.

Implantable gastric stimulation showed promise as a treatment for morbid obesity when it was first tested in 1995. Since then, several reports have come out supporting its safety and efficacy, but some patients do not respond.

Dr. Jiande D. Z. Chen, from the University of Texas in Galveston, and colleagues found that gastric electrical stimulation can be performed using mucosal electrodes placed endoscopically, potentially reducing the complications that can arise with surgically placed serosal electrodes. This approach, which allows for temporary stimulation, may be useful in identifying patients likely to benefit from long-term therapy.

In the new study, reported in the American Journal of Gastroenterology for April, Dr. Chen's group tested their GES approach in 12 healthy volunteers. The electrodes were placed in the fundus of the stomach and food intake, gastric accommodation, and other parameters were recorded over 3 consecutive days.

Compared with sham-GES, real GES was associated with significant reductions in food intake and maximum water intake. In addition, real GES delayed gastric emptying during the first 45 minutes after a meal. No significant increases in dyspeptic symptoms were seen with real GES compared with sham stimulation.

"These data suggest that GES for obesity may be achieved using mucosal electrodes. Future studies are required to prove this concept," the authors conclude.



Source:  Diabetes In Control: Am J Gastroenterol 2006;101:798-803

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