Supragastric belching

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Abstract

Purpose of review

Supragastric belching has recently gained recognition as a belching disorder of behavioral origin that can be accurately diagnosed on esophageal impedance monitoring. Its contribution to numerous other gastrointestinal disorders is beginning to be appreciated. Improved knowledge of its pathophysiology has enabled identification of therapeutic goals, some of which have been subject to formal study and demonstrated good outcomes. This review sets out to present and discuss new findings related to the improved understanding of the relationship between supragastric belching and other gastrointestinal disorders, as well as fresh concepts in terms of management.

Recent findings

Supragastric belching is now shown to be associated with globus, as well as reflux symptoms in proton pump inhibitor nonresponders. Patients with supragastric belching experience higher frequency of belching events if they have concurrent esophageal hypomotility. Gum chewing and sleeve gastrectomy have no impact on supragastric belching. Pediatric studies suggest an overlap with aerophagia that is not observed in adults. Successful treatments trialed recently include psychoeducation and behavioral therapy delivered by a health psychologist with expertise in gastroenterology.

Summary

With the foreseeable increase in recognition and diagnosis of pathological supragastric belching, there is a clear need to better understand its pathophysiology, especially in terms of its emerging importance in relation to other gastrointestinal disorders. Further study is justified to uncover additional therapeutic options for this benign but disabling condition.

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