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Dumping

Gastric Dumping Syndrome most frequently occurs when a patient has had surgery that has resulted in a smaller stomach. (e.g. oesophagectomy, gastric or bariatric surgery).

With a smaller stomach, it can feel full quicker and dump the contents too quickly into the duodenum by osmosis occasioned by the intestinal contents having more sugars than the stomach contents resulting in a rapid rush of water from the stomach. This causes tummy rumblings (borborygmi) bloating and nausea. That is known as "early dumping" and typically occurs about 30 minutes after eating. And the extra liquid rushing into th eintestines can result in rather watery diarrhoea.

Late dumping typically occurs a couple of hours later and its symptoms can include hyperhydrosis (profuse sweating), dizziness, rapid and hard heartbeat and feeling very weak.

Because of the rapid sugar imbalance, the pancreas may produce an excess of insulin which can cause a hypoglycemic event similar to a diabetic which in extreme cases can lead to coma.

Management of the condition focusses on diet. This list comes from CORE charity. [o-iv]

1. Eat small frequent, regular meals

2. Only drink between meals.

3. Avoid too much sugar and sugary foods. If necessary, you can use artificial sweeteners.

4. Avoid excesses of acidic foods eg. Tomatoes and citrus fruits.

5. Excess fat should be avoided

6. Try not to eat late at night.

7. Avoid food temperature extremes.

8. If you are underweight seek advice from a dietitian regarding energy and protein

supplements.

9. Increase foods rich in calcium and Vitamin D.

10. Iron, folic acid and Vitamin B12 supplementation may be necessary. 

As for a diabetic, if prone to hypogylcemia, keeping a couple of dextrose tablets available to take at the earliest signs will help.