Functional dyspepsia (FD) is common in children, with as many as 80% of those being evaluated for chronic abdominal pain reporting symptoms of epigastric discomfort, nausea, or fullness. It is known that patients with persistent complaints have increased comorbidities such as depression and anxiety. The interaction with psychopathologic variables has been found to mediate the association between upper abdominal pain and gastric hypersensitivity. These observations suggest that abnormal central nervous system processing of gastric stimuli may be a relevant pathophysiologic mechanism in FD. Despite increased understanding, no specific therapy has emerged; however, recent nonpharmacological-based options such as hypnosis may be effective. Novel approaches, including dietary manipulation and use of nutraceuticals such as ginger and Iberogast (Medical Futures Inc., Ontario, Canada), may also be considered.
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