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Common symptoms and disorders: gastrointestinal symptoms 

Common symptoms and disorders: gastrointestinal symptoms
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date: 07 May 2021

Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing, is a complex problem that is identified as a common occurrence in palliative care. Although people may present with dysphagia as an issue that requires palliation, other people may develop dysphagia as a complication of progressive disease and increasing debilitation. The diagnosis of dyspepsia requires people to be experiencing one or more of the following four problems: epigastric pain, epigastric burning, postprandial fullness, or early satiety. Dyspepsia may occur either as a functional disorder where the cause is not clear or as a secondary disorder. Hiccup, or more correctly singultus, is a problem where people experience a sharp and involuntary contraction of the muscles of inspiration which causes a sudden sharp inspiration and closure of the glottis. Although this is often a short-lived experience, for some people, it may be more prolonged. This chapter discusses the definition, prevalence, pathophysiology, causes, presenting problems, investigations, and management of dysphagia, dyspepsia, and hiccup.

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