Gastroparesis literally means stomach paralysis. It occurs when the nerves in the stomach become damaged. It is frequently seen in diabetics who have had difficulty controlling their insulin levels. In some cases it appears after abdominal surgery. Most other cases are idiopathic, which means of "unknown cause". Idiopathic gastroparesis is often blamed on viruses, but many times physicians have no explanation. Recent research has been looking for a link between estrogen and idiopathic gastroparesis, since a large majority of people with idiopathic gastroparesis are women.
Symptoms of gastroparesis include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, weight loss, malnutrition, dehydration, bloating, early satiety, reflux, and anorexia. Patients with gastroparesis often choose not to eat since it will only make them sick.
is a motility drug which was studied in the United States for 20 years. There was only one reported death from domperidone, and only then because the patient was given a very high dose through the intravenous route. There has never been any reports of death on oral domperidone. There are no serious side effects.
In spite of its proven safety, it was not approved for use in the U.S. Janssen Pharmaceutical discontinued researching this drug in October 2000. It is available in many other country in the world. It has been shown to be effective for many people with gastroparesis who did not respond well to the other medications available. Propulsid, also an effective agent, was removed from the market. Erythromycin has little benefit when not taken with another motility drug, and very few people can tolerate Reglan. There are only drugs to treat symptoms of GP and they are not usually very effective and have bad side effects at times.
The good news is that domperidone is available from compounding pharmacies with a physicians prescription.
Domperidone can be obtained from S&P; Prescription Compounding Services, Inc. with a prescription. Call 516-644-2470.