Effect of Cold Stress on Esophageal Peristalsis in Healthy Humans During the Postprandial Period

R. Penagini, B. Bartesaghi, A. Picone, P. A. Bianchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The effect of cold stress on esophageal peristalsis was assessed in nine healthy subjects after ingestion of a 700‐kcal meal. All subjects underwent a control stimulus (immersion of the nondominant hand in water at 37° C) and a stressful stimulus (immersion in water at 4°C) on separate days and in randomized order. When compared to the control stimulus, stress increased blood pressure (p < 0.01) and pulse rate (p < 0.05). It also determined an increase of 9 ± 3 mm Hg (mean ± SEM) in amplitude (p < 0.05), of 0.2 ± 0.1 seconds in duration (p < 0.1), and of 0.3 ± 0.1 cm per second in propagation velocity (p < 0.05) of peristalsis, as assessed after water swallows. Percentage of failed peristalsis was unaffected by stress. We conclude that cold stress exerts only minor effects on variables of the peristaltic wave and does not induce dysmotility in the esophagus of healthy subjects during the postprandial period.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-169
Number of pages7
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1991



  • esophageal function
  • esophagus
  • stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Gastroenterology

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