Papers And Originals

Pharmacological Emptying of the Stomach with Metoclopramide

Br Med J 1971; 2 doi: (Published 05 June 1971) Cite this as: Br Med J 1971;2:558
  1. T. Hilary Howells,
  2. T. Khanam,
  3. Louis Kreel,
  4. C. Seymour,
  5. B. Oliver,
  6. J. A. H. Davies


    This paper evaluates the use of metoclopramide (Maxolon) in emptying human stomach contents into the duodenum and beyond. A method of quantitative assessment of content by barium swallow radiography is used in the study, and the method is recommended as a diagnostic manoeuvre in patients presenting for emergency surgery in whom the stomach content is in doubt. Oral metoclopramide was found effective in emptying stomachs challenged by water load, and the intravenous route has been found effective in emptying semisolid contents in emergency clinical situations. A radiographic scan of the resting stomach was made on patients waiting for routine surgery who had received a variety of common premedication; it was shown that significant residues occur.

    We believe that metoclopramide deserves further investigation in order to exploit its potential in reducing the hazard of regurgitation and vomiting in patients requiring emergency anaesthesia and surgery.