Digestive Diseases - Gastroenterology

Mount Sinai Center for Gastrointestinal Physiology & Motility

At the Mount Sinai Center for Gastrointestinal Physiology & Motility, we strive to provide the most advanced and comprehensive care for our patients with motility disorders. We honor this commitment by using the latest technological advances in diagnostics and treatment, world-class expertise, interdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary collaboration.

Motility Disorders

“Motility disorders” is an umbrella term that encompasses many conditions that can affect the different parts of the intestinal tract. In essence, the cause of these motility disorders is a dysfunction of either the nerves or muscles that leads to the intestinal muscles contracting or relaxing improperly. Some motility disorders (like gastroesophageal reflux disease) are very common, while others, like gastroparesis, are more rare. Some patients have a motility disorder that only affects one part of their intestine while others may have more than one.

Examples of Conditions we treat:

  • Swallowing disorders/dysphagia: trouble swallowing or food feeling stuck
  • Achalasia: failure of the lower esophageal sphincter to relax that leads to dysphagia or regurgitation
  • Esophageal spasm: hyperactive contractions of the esophagus that can lead to chest pain or dysphagia
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease: exposure of the esophagus lining to stomach contents that can lead to symptoms like heartburn
  • Gastroparesis: slow gastric emptying of food from the stomach
  • Functional dyspepsia: uncomfortable stomach fullness, burning, or pain
  • Cyclic vomiting syndrome: repeating bouts of vomiting that stop on their own
  • Chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction: a rare condition where the small intestine is unable to push digested food through the digestive tract, as if there were an intestinal obstruction but there is no actual physical blockage
  • Intestinal dysmotility: abnormal intestinal contractions, such as spasms and weak contractions that affects the digestion process
  • Refractory constipation: disorders that slow the process of moving stool through the large intestine. While chronic constipation is usually managed by general gastroenterologists, it sometimes requires specialized testing or treatment provided by motility specialists.
  • Pelvic dyssynergia: uncoordinated muscle movements in the pelvis that leads to difficulty evacuating stool
  • Fecal incontinence: loss of bowel control