Dumping syndrome Signs & Symptoms

Dumping Syndrome is a rapid emptying of the gastric contents into the small intestine that occurs following gastric resection.

Dumping syndrome consists of a series of vasomotor and GI signs and symptoms and occurs in patients who have undergone vagotomy and drainage (especially Billroth procedures).

Two phases of dumping are early and late, can occur. Early dumping takes place 15-30 min after meals and consists of:

 crampy abdominal discomfort, nausea, diarrhea, belching, tachycardia, palpitations, diaphoresis, light-headedness, and, rarely, syncope.


These signs and symptoms arise from the rapid emptying of hyperosmolar gastric contents into the small intestine, resulting in a fluid shift into the gut lumen with plasma volume contraction and acute intestinal distention. Release o f vasoactive G I hormones (vasoactive intestinal  polypeptide, Neurotensin, motilin ) is also theorized  to play a role in early dumping .

The late phase of dumping typically occurs 90 min to 3 h after meals. Vasomotor symptoms (light-headedness, diaphoresis, palpitations, tachycardia, and syncope) predominate during this phase.



  • Symptoms occurring 30 minutes after eating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Feelings of abdominal fullness and abdominal cramping
  • Diarrhea
  • Palpitations and tachycardia
  • Perspiration
  • Weakness and dizziness
  • Borborygmi (loud gurgles indicating hyperperistalsis)

How Dumping Syndrome can be prevented:

  • Avoid sugar, salt, and milk.
  • Eat a high-protein, high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet.
  • Eat small meals and avoid consuming fluids with meals.
  • Lie down after meals.
  • Take antispasmodic medications as prescribed to delay gastric emptying.

Leave a Reply