Gastrointestinal Problems

Gastrointestinal (GI) problems or Gastrointestinal disorders, are significantly common in patients who suffer from diabetes type 1 and type 2 diabetes

Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Long standing diabetes and poor blood sugar control can cause damaging effects to the autonomic nerves of the gastrointestinaI (GI) tract resulting in abnormal motility that causes common uncomfortable symptoms and complications that have become more frequent as the rate of diabetes has increased.

Some of those complications include gastroparesis, intestinal enteropathy, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. These, bring about many symptoms that can make a diabetic’s day to day life unpleasant and even painful.

Abnormal motility of the GI tract can lead to heartburn, reflux, which is backup of stomach contents into the esophagus, nausea, abdominal bloating, reduced appetite, excessive vomiting in severe cases, diarrhea and weight loss.

The delay in the process of gastric emptying or food leaving the stomach and entering the small intestine, also known as gastroparesis, may contribute to more trouble in controlling blood sugar levels when the food finally does pass to the intestine and as result blood sugar suddenly go up.

If you are experiencing the described symptoms, diarrhea or overwhelming nausea and vomiting on a regular, or even daily basis, you run the risk of becoming dehydrated. When you visit Trina Health of South Florida for assistance with your gastrointestinal problems, our doctors will assess your symptoms in depth. We will perform a physical exam, including the monitoring of your blood sugar and blood tests such as a complete blood count, thyroid-stimulating hormone test, a metabolic panel, and amylase (if pertinent). An upper endoscopy and other specialized images may be recommended as well.

Barium X-ray

One imaging test, the Barium X-ray (also known as an upper GI (gastrointestinal series or a barium swallow). Requires ingestion of a liquid known as barium. Barium coats your esophagus, stomach, and small intestine and allow them to show on x-rays.

Gastric Manometry

If a Gastric Manometry exam is recommended, the electrical and muscular activity in the stomach will be measured. Medical professionals will pass a thin tube down the throat and into the stomach. The tube contains a wire that takes measurements of the stomach’s electrical and muscular activity as it digests liquids and solid food. These measurements illustrate the efficiency of digestion and allow observation of any delays in digestion.

Radioisotope Gastric-Emptying Scan

A Radioisotope Gastric-Emptying Scan is an exam that will require you to eat food that contains a radioisotope, a substance that will show up in a scan. The level of radiation from the radioisotope is small and not dangerous. After eating, you will lie under a machine that detects the radioisotope in the food ingested in the stomach to determine how quickly it leaves the stomach. If more than half of the food remains in the stomach after two hours, you will be diagnosed with a motility disorder.

Regardless of how the condition is detected, the most important treatment goal for diabetes-related GI complications is careful management of blood glucose levels. Treatments may include insulin, oral medications, changes in diet, and in some severe cases, feeding tubes and intravenous feeding may be required.

Manage Your Blood Glucose Levels

Patients with gastroparesis absorb food much more slowly than normal and absorb the contents at an unpredictable pace. To better manage your blood glucose levels, you may need to take insulin more often, take your insulin after you eat instead of before, or check your blood glucose levels frequently after you eat. Administer insulin whenever necessary.

Diabetes Related Gastroparesis Treatment

When you come in for an appointment, our staff will be able to guide you more closely based on your unique needs. Set up an appointment today by calling us at 040-39565230 or you can click here now for more information.