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A noninvasive technique for measuring electrical activity of the small intestine by placing electrodes on the abdominal skin over the small intestine is introduced. Surface recordings were obtained in ten healthy volunteers, three patients with total gastrectomy and five patients with gastroparesis (a slight degree of paralysis of the mucosal coat of the stomach). An omnipresent 9-12-cpm electrical activity was observed in all surface recordings. The findings from the surface electrodes were consistent with those reported in the literature for implanted or intubated electrodes. It is concluded that the technique is effective for noninvasive measurement of electrical activity of the small intestine and may have potential application in medical research and clinical diagnosis.
Date of Publication: June 1993