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Stomach Outflow Obstruction

This is a complicated, rare and poorly understood condition in which there is a reduction or delay in the stomach emptying its contents. It may be caused by a physical obstruction (thickening of the wall and narrowing of the outflow channel) or a functional problem.

Gastric outflow obstruction can cause recurrent colic (usually associated with eating), gastric ulcers and stomach impactions. This problem can also result from severe stomach ulcers, causing scarring of the stomach wall and dysfunction.

Gastroscopy can help confirm the diagnosis through evaluation of the outflow of the stomach. Treatment may involve ongoing use of anti-ulcer medications, and the feeding of multiple small meals throughout the day or free-feeding. In some cases, surgery is necessary to relieve the outflow obstruction.

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Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP

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