© 2017 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature. All rights reserved. Functional dyspepsia is one of the most prevalent functional gastrointestinal disorders. Functional dyspepsia comprises three subtypes with presumed different pathophysiology and aetiology: postprandial distress syndrome (PDS), epigastric pain syndrome (EPS) and a subtype with overlapping PDS and EPS features. Functional dyspepsia symptoms can be caused by disturbed gastric motility (for example, inadequate fundic accommodation or delayed gastric emptying), gastric sensation (for example, sensations associated with hypersensitivity to gas and bloating) or gastric and duodenal inflammation. A genetic predisposition is probable but less evident than in other functional gastrointestinal disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Psychiatric comorbidity and psychopathological state and trait characteristics could also play a part, although they are not specific to functional dyspepsia and are less pronounced than in IBS. Possible differential diagnoses include Helicobacter pylori infection and peptic ulceration. Pharmacological therapy is mostly based on the subtype of functional dyspepsia, such as prokinetic and fundus-relaxing drugs for PDS and acid-suppressive drugs for EPS, whereas centrally active neuromodulators and herbal drugs play a minor part. Psychotherapy is effective only in a small subset of patients, whereas quality of life can be severely affected in nearly all patients. Future therapies might include novel compounds that attempt to treat the underlying gastric and duodenal inflammation.