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Schmitz, A; Kellenberger, C J; Liamlahi, R; Studhalter, M; Weiss, M (2011). Gastric emptying after overnight fasting and clear fluid intake: a prospective investigation using serial magnetic resonance imaging in healthy children. British Journal of Anaesthesia, 107(3):425-429.

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Current guidelines recommend preoperative fasting of 2 h for clear fluids, which is often exceeded in routine clinical practice. Existing data on residual gastric volumes in children do not consider fluid intake within <2 h and rely on the aspiration of gastric contents via a gastric tube. This study evaluated the emptying of clear fluids from the stomach using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Healthy volunteers aged 6-14 years were asked to fast overnight. MRI scans to assess gastric volumes were obtained before and immediately after drinking 7 ml kg(-1) of diluted raspberry syrup and then every 30 min up to 120 min. Volumes were determined by a blinded investigator and indexed gastric fluid/air volumes (GFV(w)/GAV(w)) and half-life (t(1/2)) of GFV(w) course after clear fluid intake were calculated.

Sixteen children, median age 9.2 (range 6.4-12.8) years, were investigated. Median (range) GFV(w) was 0.62 (0.15-0.97) ml kg(-1) before and 6.68 (4.77-7.78) ml kg(-1) immediately after fluid intake, and 2.92 (0.43-5.04), 1.27 (0.28-3.62), 0.42 (0.07-2.49), and 0.32 (0.04-1.13) ml kg(-1) 30, 60, 90, and 120 min thereafter. Median GFV(w) declined exponentially (t(1/2)=26.1 min). Median individual t(1/2) was 23.6 (range 17.9-47.8) min. GAV(w) showed considerable intra- and inter-individual variation.

In healthy school children, gastric emptying after ingestion of clear fluid occurs with a median half-life time of <30 min but with considerable inter-individual variation.


10 citations in Web of Science®
11 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Children's Hospital Zurich > Medical Clinic
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Children's Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Surgery
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Deposited On:20 Dec 2011 10:06
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:13
Publisher:Oxford University Press
Publisher DOI:10.1093/bja/aer167
PubMed ID:21676893

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