Slowed intestinal motility

Anyone have this and treated it successfully ?
family member with type 1, excellent A1C/BG control, has after many years what we’ve been calling: slowed intestinal motility
It’s where motility seems to stop, some bloating lower abdomen, starts to feel that “things could happen” and so doesn’t to be away from a bathroom; and eventually is able to “evacuate”. He had this when first diagnosed with Type 1 but it went away; 25+ years ago.
He doesn’t think it’s gastroparesis, also is not real confident in just “seeing the PCP to get a referral” and going with it.
I think he’d like a better understanding of what to expect/what treatments are used/testing/ before seeing the doc.

I realize this is a big ask.
However, I’m thinking that slowed intestinal motility (slowed movement of the intestines) is common in diabetes… What are you guys doing about it? Thanks for any input.

Hi @Lily, I don’t think this is as common as you think with diabetes. I’ve had Type 1 for over 50 years and have never had this. Perhaps others who have experienced it can give you better advice than I can. Sorry I can’t help with this!

Pam K

I wish I could offer some insights but I can’t. I would suggest your relative bite the bullet and see a specialist to get to the bottom of things. Many years ago I was tested for diabetic gastroparesis and was told that my digestion was indeed slow - I guess it was a mild case and it went away after a while. If they already see a diabetes specialist see if doctor can write the referral so your relative can avoid a trip to the PCP.

Has he been tested for hypothyroidism? I wouldn’t say that I have delayed gastric emptying as food hits my system quick, but I know when my thyroid meds need adjustment one of the first things that is affected for me is digestion (primarily constipation and bloating from constipation). Could be something like IBS too. I have a sensitive tummy and when I got tests done by GI they told me that T1D and IBS are pretty common.


Strange stuff happens when you have t1d as you know, and maybe my experience can give you more to contemplate. At age 77 I have had well controlled type1 diabetes for 25yrs and 12yrs ago intolerable gastric problems proved to be caused by undiagnosed Celiac disease. A proper diet brought it under control but years with it caused something called Microscopic Colitis. Until this year everything was predictable, but in April the GI problems returned with a vengeance, and only after considering an often associated condition of Celiac called Lactose intolerance did I figure it out. Now after only weeks of removing all dairy products from my diet I am once again my old cheerful self.

All the above health problems are overactive immune system related, and genetic in nature as well as opportune.

At least in my case the GI issue had nothing to do with the t1d.

Just my experience and I hope this helps,