Dyspesia (indigestion) is a term used for persistent pain or discomfort in the upper abdomen. Other symptoms that also often appear
at the same time are
- bloating/ early satiety
Sometimes dyspesia accompanies a main disease - GERD (gastro-esophegeal reflux disease), Peptic ulcer, malignancy, pancreatic disease, NSAID-use and so on. But more often (50-70% of the time), dyspepsia has no identified, organic origin. In that case, it is called functional dyspepsia. This means that no tests can show any organic source for the dyspepsia. The only thing that the doctor knows is the symptoms explaiend by the patient. To rule out for alarm symptoms (symptoms that indicate for malignancy) or when patient´s age is more than 55 years old, upper gastrointestinal endoscopy in indicated.
Treatment for dyspepsia relies on the etiology. In case of organic etiology, it is simple - you treat the underlying disease (peptic ulcer, GERD etc.). In the case of functional dyspepsia, it gets difficult. There is no organic cause and thus it makes it hard to have any therapeutic aim. Even though, one of the most important steps is to make sure the patient is well-informed and accepting of his/her condition. Also, patients can try acid supression , although it has shown to be ineffective in many cases. Acid supressants used are either H2-receptor antagonists or PPI (Proton Pump Inhibitors).
Wish you a pleasant day,
Netter´s Gastroenterology 2nd Edition