Propagation patterns of jejunal motor activity measured by high-resolution water-perfused manometry

Luis Gerardo Alcala-Gonzalez, Carolina Malagelada, Carmen Galan, Adoracion Nieto, Anna Accarino, Fernando Azpiroz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The manometric diagnosis of severe intestinal dysmotility is performed at most institutions using catheters with 2–8 sensors 5–10 cm apart. The recent application of high-resolution manometry catheters with closely spaced sensors to other gut segments has been highly successful. The objective of the present study was to determine the feasibility of a jejunal high-resolution manometry method and to carry out a descriptive analysis of normal jejunal motor function. Methods: A 36-channel high-resolution water-perfused manometry catheter (MMS-Laborie, Enschede, The Netherlands) was orally placed in the jejunum of 18 healthy subjects (10 men, eight women; 21–38 age range). Intestinal motility was recorded during 5 h, 3 during fasting, and 2 after a 450 kcal solid-liquid meal. Analysis of motility patterns was supported by computerized tools. Key Results: All healthy subjects except one showed at least one complete migrating motor complex during the 3 h fasting period. Phase III activity lasted 5 ± 1 min and migrated aborally at a velocity of 7 ± 3 cm/min. High-resolution spatial analysis showed that during phase III each individual contraction propagated rapidly (75 ± 37 cm/min) over a 32 ± 10 cm segment of the jejunum. During phase II, most contractile activity corresponded to propagated contractile events which increased in frequency from early to late phase II (0.5 ± 0.9 vs 2.5 ± 1.3 events/10 min, respectively; p < 0.001). After meal ingestion, non-propagated activity increased, whereas propagated events were less frequent than during late phase II. Conclusions & Inferences: Jejunal motility analysis with high-resolution manometry identifies propagated contractile patterns which are not apparent with conventional manometric catheters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e14240
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Issue number12
Early online date11 Aug 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2021


  • high-resolution intestinal manometry
  • intestinal motility
  • postprandial motility
  • propagated contractions


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