Testing for Motility Issues
Doylestown Health Gastroenterology offers esophageal manometry and 24-hour pH testing to evaluate patients with motility issues like swallowing disorders and uncontrolled reflux or GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) as well as anorectal manometry to help diagnose constipation or fecal incontinence.
What Is Manometry Testing?
Esophageal Manometry: Typically used for patients who experience esophageal symptoms like heartburn, GERD, dysphagia (trouble swallowing), chronic cough or chest pain, this test is performed in the gastroenterologist’s office. In this procedure, a nurse feeds a flexible catheter (with a camera attached to it on one end and a computer monitor on the other) from the nose to the stomach. Then that person drinks saline water and swallows. This can reveal any problems with motility of that area.
Anorectal Manometry: This test is often used for patients with constipation, fecal incontinence or pain to measure the strength of anal muscles and accompanying sensations in the rectum that are necessary to produce normal bowel movements. Also done in the physician’s office, this test uses a catheter that is inserted into the rectum to test the motility of the lower GI tract (with a camera on one end and a computer monitor on the other). That information is rendered into a 3D visual.
What Is 24-hour pH Testing?
24-hour pH Testing: This type of testing is also called impedance testing and helps diagnose GERD by determining how much acid is present from the stomach to the esophagus. To do this, the nurse feeds a flexible tube from the patient’s nose to the stomach. At the other end of the tube is a small computer that measures the acid in the GI tract and records what’s happening. The patient then wears the device around the waist for 24 hours at home. Then the next day at the gastroenterologist office, the tube is removed and the computer data is downloaded providing the physician with a clearer picture of the severity of reflux.