Wow, you have had a tough go and I am glad you are working well with your Dr. Up to 30% of individuals with gastroparesis are idiopathic, meaning there is no identifiable cause. Some of these cases may be due to an acute viral infection.
May I ask if you are diabetic ?
Treatments for gastroparesis include eating small meals throughout the day and avoiding fatty foods and other difficult-to-digest foods, such as legumes, lentils, and citrus fruits. Limiting or avoiding alcohol and coffee is often recommended.
Along with adequate nutrition therapy, the use of prokinetic medications has been proven effective for treating gastroparesis. Here are some current medications being prescribed for treatment:
• Reglan (Metochropropamide) works in the brain to relieve nausea and vomiting and can work on the stomach muscle directly. It does have side effects: 30% of users experience tremors, agitations, twitching, or stiffness. This drug is contraindicated for patients with Parkinson’s disease.
• Propulsid (Cisapride) has been used to relieve symptoms, but close medical supervision is needed secondary to reports of heart rhythm problems. This medication should not be used in anyone with significant heart disease, kidney and liver diseases, and/or any condition causing electrolyte problems.
• Erythromycin in small doses can be effective for gastroparesis; either tablet or liquid forms of this antibiotic are effective. Liquid forms must be stored in the refrigerator.
Gastric electrical stimulation (GES), or Enterra therapy, a new device to aid in the relief of gastroparesis, has been approved by the FDA. This “stomach pacemaker” falls under a special designation of Humanitarian Use Device. The one catch is that it is difficult to access this technology because insurance companies label Enterra therapy as “experimental.” Lobbying groups, such as the Gastroparesis and Dysmotilities Association, are currently petitioning the FDA for full approval of GES. References for this article are available upon request by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Moderator: Anxiety, Osteoarthritis,
GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.
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