There is no cure for gastroparesis, but there are treatments that may help provide relief from the symptoms of nausea and vomiting.
Treatment usually begins with learning about nutrition and modifying diet. The goal is to reduce symptoms and maintain adequate fluids and nutrition. A modified diet typically consists of liquids, restricted fats and plant fibre, and frequent small meals.
The most common drugs used to treat gastroparesis or its symptoms include:
Prokinetic drugs – used to improve the rate of stomach emptying
Antiemetic drugs – used to control nausea and vomiting but have no effect on stomach emptying
This therapy involves the delivery of liquid nutrients via a tube placed directly into the stomach or small intestine. Feeding tubes are usually temporary and used only when gastroparesis is severe.
Total parenteral nutrition (TPN) supplies nutrients to a person’s bloodstream through an intravenous (IV) infusion. TPN is used only if enteral feeding is not tolerated or is insufficient to meet caloric needs.
Gastric or intestinal surgery is usually only performed after other options have failed. All or part of the stomach can be removed (gastrectomy). A feeding tube may be placed through the abdominal wall into the stomach (gastrostomy) or small intestine (jejunostomy).
Gastric electrical stimulation is for people with chronic, drug-refractory (resistant to medication) nausea and vomiting due to gastroparesis of diabetic or idiopathic origin.
Gastric electrical stimulation works by sending a small electrical current to the muscle of the stomach. This option requires surgical implantation of the Medtronic Enterra™ Therapy system and is only appropriate for people who have gastroparesis symptoms that do not improve after taking medication.
Ask your doctor about potential side effects associated with each treatment option.
The Enterra™ Therapy system for gastric electrical stimulation is authorised for use in treatment of chronic intractable (drug refractory) nausea and vomiting secondary to gastroparesis of diabetic or idiopathic etiology. The effectiveness of this device for this use has not been demonstrated.
Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.