The accommodation reflex is an important mechanism of normal gastric physiology. In functional dyspepsia, impairment of accommodation has been found in 40% of cases, but it has been described in several other upper gastrointestinal disorders, such as diabetic gastropathy and postfundoplication syndrome. This review focuses on the pathways involved in the normal accommodation reflex, the relevance of impaired gastric accommodation as a cause of morbidity and the methods used to assess gastric accommodation in humans. The available medical and therapeutic strategies based on the actual knowledge of the physiology and pharmacology of the accommodation reflex are outlined, with a focus on the role of nitrergic neurones and serotonergic receptors.
- CCK, cholecystokinin
- cGMP, guanosine 3′,5′-cyclic monophosphate
- 5-HT, 5-hydroxytryptamine
- MRI, magnetic resonance imaging
- SPECT, single-photon emission computed tomography
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Published Online First 19 July 2006
Competing interests: None
SK is a research fellow of the Fonds voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek—Vlaanderen.