Monitoring gastric myoelectric activity after pancreaticoduodenectomy for diet “readiness”

Monica M. Dua, Anand Navalgund, Steve Axelrod, Lindsay Axelrod, Patrick J. Worth, Jeffrey A. Norton, George A. Poultsides, George Triadafilopoulos, Brendan C. Visser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Postoperative delayed gastric emptying (DGE) is a frustrating complication of pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD). We studied whether monitoring of postoperative gastric motor activity using a novel wireless patch system can identify patients at risk for DGE. Patients (n = 81) were prospectively studied since 2016; 75 patients total were analyzed for this study. After PD, battery-operated wireless patches (G-Tech Medical) that acquire gastrointestinal myoelectrical signals are placed on the abdomen and transmit data by Bluetooth. Patients were divided into early and late groups by diet tolerance of 7 days [enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) goal]. Subgroup analysis was done of patients included after ERAS initiation. The early and late groups had 50 and 25 patients, respectively, with a length of stay (LOS) of 7 and 11 days (P < 0.05). Nasogastric insertion was required in 44% of the late group. Tolerance of food was noted by 6 versus 9 days in the early versus late group (P < 0.05) with higher cumulative gastric myoelectrical activity. Diminished gastric myoelectrical activity accurately identified delayed tolerance to regular diet in a logistical regression analysis [area under the curve (AUC): 0.81; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.74–0.92]. The gastric myoelectrical activity also identified a delayed LOS status with an AUC of 0.75 (95% CI, 0.67–0.88). This stomach signal continued to be predictive in 90% of the ERAS cohort, despite earlier oral intake. Measurement of gastric activity after PD can distinguish patients with shorter or longer times to diet. This noninvasive technology provides data to identify patients at risk for DGE and may guide the timing of oral intake by gastric “readiness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)G743-G751
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Delayed gastric emptying
  • Enhanced recovery after surgery
  • Gastric myoelectric activity
  • Gastric technology
  • Gastroparesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Physiology (medical)


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