Gastroparesis among Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetic Patients in the United Arab Emirates


Aims: Delayed gastric emptying (GE)may have a major effect on the management of diabetic patients by causing upper gastrointestinal symptoms, impaired oral drug absorption and contributing to poor blood sugar control. Although the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has one of the highest prevalence of diabetes in the world, studies focusing on the prevalence of diabetes gastroparesis among these diabetics have never been reported previously. The aim of this study was to investigate gastroparesis among randomly selected Emirati type 1 and type 2 diabetic patients referred to a national diabetes center in the UAE. Methods: The study was designed as a controlled, single-blinded study. Using a standardized ultrasound technique, GE was studied in thirty-one randomly recruited type 1 and type 2 diabetic patients and ten normal healthy volunteers. The gastric emptying rate (GER) was estimated and expressed as the percentage reduction in antral cross-sectional area from 15 to 90 min after the ingestion of a semisolid breakfast meal. Results:In comparison to healthy volunteers, diabetic patients showed overall significantly wider mean values of the fasting as well as the postprandial antral areas. The mean value of GER in these Emirati diabetic patients was estimated at 17%, which was less than half of that in the healthy volunteers (50%). Statistically the difference was highly significant (p< 0.001). Normal gastric emptying was estimated as of GER > 32%. Consequently, 71% (22 of 31) of the diabetic patients in this study had more or less pronounced delays in GER (gastroparesis).Conclusions:The results from the present study indicate a higher prevalence of gastroparesis among randomly selected Emirati type 1 and type 2 diabetic patients, than in any other study previously published around the world. This is in line with previous reports about the high prevalence of diabetes complications among UAE diabetics. A larger study is needed to confirm these results.

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Darwiche, G. , Mohammed, S. , Aldawi, N. , Skaria, S. and Tesfa, Y. (2014) Gastroparesis among Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetic Patients in the United Arab Emirates. Journal of Diabetes Mellitus, 4, 96-106. doi: 10.4236/jdm.2014.42016.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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