Using five non-invasive tests, abnormalities of cardiovascular reflex function were found in 20 of 50 patients with gastro-oesophageal reflux. Abnormalities of pupil cycle time, an index of non-vagal parasympathetic function, were found in only a few patients, implying that the cardiovascular abnormalities observed were not part of a generalised parasympathetic defect. The findings are consistent with the hypothesis that an abnormality of vagal function may contribute to the pathogenesis of gastro-oesophageal reflux.
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