Contractile response to colonic distention is influenced by oscillation frequency

Adil E. Bharucha, S. Dhamija, A. Japp, B. Seide, B. Walters, R. Stroetz, A. R. Zinsmeister, R. D. Hubmayr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Static colonic mechanical properties are characterized by step-wise balloon distention. It is unclear whether the state of contractile activation affects frequency-dependent differences in biomechanical properties. Our aim was to investigate the frequency-dependence of colonic mechanical properties by sinusoidal oscillation. A descending colonic balloon was sinusoidally oscillated by 25 ml at 5, 10 and 20 cpm in randomized order for 20 min at each frequency in six healthy subjects before and after neostigmine. Volume oscillation was between 75-100 mL before, and 25-50 mL after neostigmine. Pressure waveforms were most variable shortly after commencing oscillation, reflecting an initial contractile response to distention. Elastance (i.e. pressure response to imposed volume) and hysteresivity were estimated; hysteresivity represents the proportion of energy added to the system during inflation, which cannot be recovered during deflation. Colonic elastance was frequency dependent, being highest and most variable at 10 cpm. In contrast, hysteresivity was not significantly different across frequencies. Neostigmine increased mean colonic elastance at all frequencies, and hysteresivity only at 5 cpm. Thus, colonic mechanical properties, particularly elastance are frequency-dependent. The frequency-dependence of colonic mechanical properties is worthy of future study because it may provide insights into reflex responses in health and disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)64-75
Number of pages12
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2005


  • Elastance
  • Hysteresivity
  • Sinusoidal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Gastroenterology


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