Children

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Caring for children with gastroparesis and delayed gastric emptying

Learn how our Gastroenterology, Liver and Nutrition Program cares for children with gastroparesis and delayed gastric emptying.

Related tests and treatments:

Our approach to gastroparesis

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin is home to nationally known experts in motility disorders, including gastroparesis. Our neurogastroenterologists treat many patients with this condition and are actively involved in research on nausea in children, giving us valuable insights into how to best treat this and other gastrointestinal symptoms. We offer the latest testing and treatment options, including gastric pacing.

Gastroparesis services we offer

The multidisciplinary team at Children’s Hospital can help your family from diagnosis through treatment and beyond. In addition to neurogastroenterologists who specialize in gastroparesis, we offer experts in:

Diagnosing and treating gastroparesis

Diagnostic tests could include an upper GI series to check for an obstruction and an upper endoscopy (EGD) to look for inflammation. If those tests don’t reveal a problem that could be causing your child’s symptoms, the doctor will likely order a gastric emptying study to confirm the gastroparesis diagnosis. Medications are most often used to treat delayed gastric emptying. Some medications can help speed up the digestive process while others simply alleviate the most bothersome symptoms, such as nausea and belly pain/discomfort. If medications prove ineffective, your child’s doctor might recommend surgical implantation of a gastric pacer. Your child will also need to modify his or her diet: Eating small, more frequent meals and avoiding high-fat foods can ease your child’s discomfort. Cognitive behavior therapy can also provide helpful strategies for children coping with the stress of a chronic illness.

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