Effects of somatostatin on proximal gastric motor function and visceral perception


Masclee Department of Gastroenterology–Hepatology, Leiden University Medical Center, Building 1, C4-P, PO Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden, the Netherlands.



Somatostatin affects gastrointestinal motility and secretion and visceral sensation, but little is known about its effects on the proximal stomach.


To evaluate the effects of somatostatin on proximal gastric motor function and perception of symptoms.


Six healthy subjects participated in two experiments performed in random order during continuous intravenous infusion of saline or somatostatin (250 μg/h). Proximal gastric motor function was evaluated using a barostat. We performed pressure and volume distensions and a barostat procedure (minimal distending pressure + 2 mmHg). Symptoms were evaluated at regular intervals using visual analogue scales (VAS).


Neither minimal distending pressure nor gastric fundal tone were significantly different between somatostatin and saline. Pressure–volume curves during distensions were not influenced by somatostatin. However, phasic volume waves were significantly (< 0.001) reduced by somatostatin, and somatostatin significantly (< 0.05) reduced symptom perception of fullness and abdominal pressure during stepwise distensions.


Continuous infusion of somatostatin does not influence gastric compliance but it inhibits phasic volume waves and significantly reduces visceral perception.