Functional dyspepsia (FD) is *kind of* like IBS for the upper gut, but with a few important differences!⁠⁠
I see a LOT of patients that have functional dyspepsia diagnosed with IBS. Not all functional gut disorders ARE IBS – and the distinction is important!⁠
Because management is different! ⁠⁠

Functional Dyspepsia Symptoms

Functional dyspepsia feels like indigestion, with:

  • ⁠⁠🔥Upper gut pain or burning⁠⁠
  • 🍽️Getting full quickly⁠⁠
  • 🤢Nausea⁠⁠
  • 🎈 Excessive fullness, bloating⁠⁠

There are 2 Subtypes of Functional Dyspepsia

DYK: There are 2 sub-types of functional dyspepsia (FD)?⁠⁠
I was SO surprised when so many of you reached out after my last FD post. Working in gastroenterology, I felt FD was often misdiagnosed as IBS, but was blown away with so many of you saying you felt this was your exact situation. ⁠⁠
So of course, I had to bring more FD content, because I think it’s often a missed diagnosis in favour of IBS!⁠⁠

It’s important to know, there are 2 types of FD:⁠⁠

2 Types of Functional Dyspepsia Include:

  1. Postprandial distress syndrome (PDS). This is caused by a meal and feels like excessive fullness, getting full quickly, nausea, and pressure.⁠⁠
  2. ⁠⁠Epigastric pain syndrome (EPS). This causes pain & burning, which can occur at any time, and it isn’t cause by reflux. This doesn’t have to relate to eating.⁠

By distinguishing between the two, your gastroenterologist and health care team can come up with a management plan best for you! ⁠⁠
From a nutrition perspective, working on reducing the pressure and discomfort in the gut by way of reducing meal volumes, choosing foods that empty quickly from the gut, and reducing gut irritants can often be most helpful!⁠⁠
Bottom line: getting the RIGHT gut diagnosis is key. If you have more upper gut symptoms, and structural causes have been ruled out, be sure to talk with your doctor about if it could be FD! ⁠⁠

It’s important the patient has other conditions ruled out, like H Pylori, gastritis, chronic reflux to be able to diagnose FD.⁠⁠

What causes functional dyspepsia?

What’s going in your body when you have FD? Well. There’s a few potential causes. This includes:⁠⁠

  • Your gut not relaxing when filled with food⁠⁠
  • Visceral hypersensitivity (experiencing pain with normal digestion)⁠⁠
  • Motility issues – meaning your gut doesn’t empty or move as it should⁠⁠
  • Possible inflammation or immune system involvement (similar to IBS – scroll back in my posts to learn more about this theory)⁠⁠

How to manage functional dyspepsia?

How do we manage it? Luckily – there is a LOT we CAN do, when we have the right diagnosis, with a lot of ‘tools in our toolkit’ including:⁠⁠

  • Dietary changes⁠⁠
  • Physiotherapy⁠⁠
  • Psychological interventions⁠⁠
  • Medications⁠⁠

Talk with your health care team about which approach is best for you! ⁠⁠⁠⁠