Open Access Research article

Gender aspects suggestive of gastroparesis in patients with diabetes mellitus: a cross-sectional survey

Ram Dickman15*, Julio Wainstein25, Marek Glezerman45, Yaron Niv15 and Mona Boaz35

Author Affiliations

1 Departments of Gastroenterology, Rabin Medical Center, Beilinson Campus, Petach Tikva, Israel

2 Diabetes Unit, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel

3 Epidemiology Unit, The Edith Wolfson Medical Center, Tel Aviv University, Holon, Tel Aviv, Israel

4 Research Center for Gender Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel

5 Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel

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BMC Gastroenterology 2014, 14:34  doi:10.1186/1471-230X-14-34

Published: 19 February 2014

Abstract

Background

It is suggested that symptoms related to gastroparesis are more common in female than in male patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). The association between sex and prevalence of symptoms suggestive of gastroparesis among patients with T2DM in Israel has not been reported. The aim of this study was to describe the associations between sex, clinical characteristics, type, severity and prevalence of dyspeptic symptoms in a large population of patients with T2DM in Israel.

Methods

All patients completed a demographic questionnaire and the Gastroparesis Cardinal Symptom Index (GCSI). Data regarding disease duration, medications, complications, recent blood glucose and HbA1c levels were also collected. In this nested case–control study, 173 female and 209 male patients were identified from within a cross-sectional survey of 382 patients with T2DM. Logistic and general linear modeling was used to assess associations between sex, clinical data, and the presence (type and number) of symptoms.

Results

Compared to males, female patients with T2DM had a higher body mass index (BMI) (31.9 vs. 29.2; P = 0.001) and HbA1c levels (7.9 vs. 7.5; P = 0.04). A larger proportion of males suffered from peripheral vascular disease (P = 0.02) and ischemic heart disease (P = 0.001). Other disease characteristics did not differ between the sexes. The prevalence of nausea (P = 0.001), early satiety (P = 0.005), loss of appetite (P = 0.002), or presence of any cardinal symptom (P = 0.001) was significantly higher among females. Severity of most cardinal symptoms was also higher in females. The presence of at least one cardinal symptom was more likely among obese females with longer disease duration and poor glycemic control.

Conclusions

Prevalence and severity of symptoms suggestive of gastroparesis is particularly high among obese females with long standing and poorly controlled T2DM.

Keywords:
Diabetes mellitus; Diabetic gastroparesis