- by Medihope Super Speciality Hospital
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- Feb 02 2018
WHAT IS MENETRIER DISEASE?
It is a rare disorder characterized by massive overgrowth of mucous cells (foveola) in the mucous membrane lining of the stomach which results in large gastric folds. It is not a true form of gastritis. It is classified as a form of hyperplastic gastropathy and not as a form of gastritis.
The exact cause of Menetrier disease is still unknown but there can be multiple causes. In children, it is associated with infection with cytomegalovirus (CMV). In adults, the bacterium Helicobacter pyroli has been implicated as the cause of Menetrier’s disease. It may result from increased activation of the epidermal growth factor receptor in the stomach by the protein called transforming growth factor-alpha (TGF). In rare cases, it shows genetic link. It affects males more often than females. It most often affects adults in their 50s or older.
Signs & Symptoms
Symptoms may vary from case to case. Some may not exhibit any symptoms. The most common symptom is a pain in the upper middle region of the stomach also known as epigastric pain. Other symptoms are, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, these symptoms are less frequently reported. In some cases, weight loss, and profound loss of appetite may also occur.
Some variable symptoms associated with the disease are the loss of protein from the circulation into the gastrointestinal tract (protein-losing gastropathy) such as loss of the protein albumin which is also called as hypoalbuminemia. Protein loss may result in fluid accumulation (edema), especially in the legs and it can be severe in some cases. As a result of erosions or ulcers in the stomach lining, gastrointestinal bleeding has also been reported in some cases of Menetrier disease. However, researchers do not believe this to be proven with certainty.
If an individual has large gastric folds than he or she is suspected of Menetrier disease. Large gastric folds may be diagnosed by a radiologic study after a patient drink a barium solution or by an endoscopic exam. A biopsy is also done if found necessary.
It has been treated with anticholergic drugs, acid suppression therapy, and antibiotic therapy directed against H.pylori infection. In some cases, a high-protein diet may be recommended to combat protein loss. To replace albumin loss, albumin transfusions may also be used. Cetuximab infusions are also used. This treatment can improve quality of life, restore gastric acid production and possibly even reduce the thickness of the stomach wall.
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