The dumping syndrome can be described as a medical condition because of which the stomach empties its food content, especially those that are high in sugar into the first part of the small intestine. This process happens more quickly and rapidly than it should while leaving a few symptoms behind. One can be diagnosed with this syndrome after he or she has been operated on. Usually, patients with stomach surgeries are more prone to this gastric problem.
Dumping syndrome is also often called rapid gastric emptying. As stated, this disorder most affects those with esophageal or gastric surgery but diabetic patients and people with certain medications can also have this problem. This syndrome by and large has two types. Early dumping syndrome and late dumping syndrome.
The former one occurs ten to thirty minutes after the patient has taken his meal and the latter one starts affecting him after one to three hours. This way the small intestine rapidly expands by the sudden movement of fluid and a large amount of food coming through. This can cause abdominal pain with several other symptoms.
Let us now discuss the cause, symptoms, and treatment of dumping syndrome.
Dumping syndrome symptoms
Dumping syndrome symptoms can differ on the basis of the two types and person to person. Nausea, vomiting, and pain in the lower part of the abdominal are some of the most basic symptoms. Apart from these, one significant indication the patient may get is diarrhoea. This happens because of the instant shift of food material from the stomach to the lower intestine as said.
Also, if the patient starts to feel bloated or full as soon as he eats, it is probably a sign of this syndrome. Sweating, dizziness, and extreme weakness in the body also make up the list of dumping syndrome. These were the indications of early dumping syndrome and can be experienced shortly after eating anything. Sugar is the one ingredient to pinpoint in this case.
Some other factors that you can look upon are hypoglycemia and flushing after one to three hours of eating. These are the symptoms related to late dumping syndrome. Most people only experience indications stated earlier or early symptoms when compared to late symptoms. It is rare to find out patients coming into contact with both kinds of indications.
Dumping syndrome diagnosis
This syndrome can be easily diagnosed by looking into the symptoms. In case of any confusion and uncertainty, the doctors can also run a few tests to find out the real reason. Glucose tolerance test, gastric emptying scintigraphy, and endoscopy are some of the tests that are widely performed.
In the first one, the patient is given some amount of glucose to find out how well the tissues are working and how are they reacting to the insulin. After the process, a low blood sugar level or a rise in pulse rate can confirm the syndrome in the patient. The second test confirms the disorder by locating a radioactive material inside the abdomen of the person being diagnosed.
Under this procedure, the person is given a meal to eat with the presence of a radioactive material that can be traced with the help of an external device or camera. The material helps in showing how the food is reacting with the body after a said number of hours. In the third test, an endoscope is fed down the throat carefully to monitor the functions inside.
Usually, the syndrome can be found just by the symptoms but these tests come in handy whenever there is a problem.
Dumping syndrome treatment
Dumping syndrome treatment typically includes lifestyle changes and is often pretty successful as well. One can begin by breaking down his meals into five or six a day from three big meals. This helps the body to digest better and completes the nutritional requirements as well. Another thing to do is to increase the amount of fibre and protein intake from day-to-day life. Fibre helps in binding the food and aids digestion and gas problems.
Along with these changes, the patient can also try taking prescribed medications for faster improvement. The medicines work in a way that slows down stomach emptying and regulates insulin. Surgeries can also be performed in the rare cases as if the previous gastric surgery has not gone well and needs correction. However, surgeries are not preferred until extremely urgent.
Dumping syndrome causes because of certain reasons and has multiple treatment options as well. One must consult a specialist and seek medical attention whenever required.