Does Reglan Work?

#1

I am new to this site, didn’t know there was this much information on this condition. I’ve had gastroparesis for over 6 years. When I was first diagnosed I was never treated it for it except given an antibiotic and that was from a stomach specialist. I have had several tests over the six years and after each test they would tell me everything is normal although I knew better. So I just assumed I had to just deal with it. I have recently been given Reglan for it. I’ve been taking it for 2 weeks now but it doesn’t seem to help a whole lot. I haven’t had as much as pain as before but as for the bloating it is just terrible. I am eating 6 small meals a day and my blood sugar is under control. Does anyone know how long it takes Reglan to take effect if it works? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

#2

I take Reglan, but it did not work by itself, I take it three times a day and Prescription strength Prilosec twice a day and it is doing pretty good. Not real bloated, no pain and less gas problems like acidic burps, etc. There are different doses of reglan as well. Your dr may have to play with things a bit.

#3

Hi Linda,

I too have had gastroparesis for quite a while (for over 7 years). I was put on many types of meds including Erythromycin, Zofran, and Reglan. I was never really sure if Reglan was really making much of a difference or not. I later had to discontinue using it due to a side effect called “Tardive Dyskinesia.” I was actually on Reglan for a year or more before I experienced this side effect. I think some people respond to using Reglan, but in my case it’s usefulness was very limited.
If you are searching for more help, support, and information regarding Gastroparesis, I also organize a support group website called G.A.T.E.-Gastroparesis And Type 1 diabetes Exhange. It is actually for anyone with either condition or both conditions like myself. The website is http://www.meetup.com/Type1Diabetes-GP-SupportGroup/

You can join the group, (it’s free) and can participate online if you aren’t located neraby. We also meet locally in th SF East Bay Area, California.

The website also has a lot of good Gastroparesis-related information on the messageboard and on the website files. I hope you find it helpful for you.

Margaret

#4

Thanks for the information. I guess I will need to talk to my doctor about it. Do you remember how long it took to work? I know some prescription drugs take a month or longer to take effect.

#5

Thank you Margaret for the information. I joined the group website G.A.T.E. What is “Tardive Dyskinesia”?

#6

Hi Linda,

I’m glad you decided to join the G.A.T.E. support group. To answer your question, “Tardive Dyskinesia” is a side effect you can experience after taking certain types of medications, including Reglan which is also known as “Metoclopramide.” It causes involuntary movements of the face. In my case, it effected my tongue. I thought it had become swollen because it seemed to keep coming out of my mouth. But what had actually occured was that I had developed this “Tardive Dyskinesia” side effect. Luckily, as soon as I stopped taking the Reglan the side effect went away. For some people, however, this side effect continues indefinately, can get worse, and can become permanent in some cases. I would recommend that you look into Reglan’s possible side effects if you will continue using this medication. I have put a few links below to some informational websites.

Here is a link to more information about the condition. https://www.google.com/health/ref/Tardive+dyskinesia
Here is a link to Reglan side effects. http://www.medicinenet.com/metoclopramide/article.htm

Margaret

#7

Thanks for the information. I will definitely be talking to my doctor regarding the side effects. So if you no longer take Reglan, what do you take if anything? My gastroparesis is so bad that I am hoping something will help it. I’ve had episodes so bad that I will be on the floor doubled over in pain from it, waiting for it to subside. It lasts about 10-15 min but it is so excruciating and afterward I will vomit so hard that I will have red splotchy patches on my face.(this was before I started taking Reglan) And then other times I am just so uncomfortable from the distention and bloating. Also I am not able to wear skirts or pants(anything with a waistband) because it is just too uncomfortable.

#8

You are welcome for the information. I have a gastric pacemaker/stimulater, which has greatly reduced the number of overall episodes I have. For example, one year I had approximately had 50-60 hospital ER/hospital admissions. Now I probably average about 3 a year. It is not a cure for Gastroparesis, but it definatly helps out a lot to prevent my nausea/vomitting/pain episodes. I can relate to the pain issues very much. The pain I experienced was a combination of burning and stabbing pain. Even if I try to lie down (between trips to the toilet to throw up), I can never find a comfortable position. The nausea is awful. It’s like a lingering nausea that makes you almost want to throw up in hopes that the feeling will go away, but it doesn’t. Once I start vomitting, it’s normally cyclic. Meaning that you are sick throwing up several times over and over and over. I am unable to hold anything down including water, so I eventually become so dehydrated that I am forced to go to the ER for IV hydration. To make matters worse for me, my veins are very hard to access, so no one can put an IV in me anymore, I now have a port that I use for this purpose.

#9

Wow you really have had it rough too. Well it is really nice to be able to talk to someone else experiencing the same thing. I’m not sure what my doctor will suggest next but I really don’t think this pill is making much of a difference anyway. Just this morning I was awoken with what seemed the start of an attack but I was able to fight it off(I am able to do that sometimes by deep breathing exercises) and then other times I am not so fortunate. Well thanks for all the information and all the best to you.

#10

You’re welcome, Linda. Good luck with everything. Feel free to contact me if you have any other questions.

#11

Linda,
In my experience Reglan worked in 2-3 days. It is helpful to take it 30 minutes before the meal too. I find the gastroparesis really complicating my blood sugar control. My doctor told me to stop taking the Reglan because of potential side effects which are irreversible once they happen. I get really bad heartburn with throbbing pain in my chest. The Reglan helps so much that I sneaked some recently- which I had leftover from my previous prescription. It helped within an hour. So now I am convinced that I need it periodically. This diagnosis makes me so mad about having diabetes- no other problems but this- healthy heart, kidneys, eyes, other nerves except the gastrointestinal ones,

#12

Laurie,

Thank you so much for the information. I have been taking Reglan 30 minutes before each meal and at bedtime. And I’ve been taking it for 3 weeks now and it hasn’t seemed to do very much. I have a lot of bloating still going on and have had to fight off stomach attacks with severe pain. Sometimes I am so bloated and it is so uncomfortable that I can’t even sleep. Also I cannot wear pants or skirts(anything with a waistband) as it is just too uncomfortable. I’m only on 5 mg so maybe that’s why, I don’t know. I’ve heard there are some bad side effects but not sure I’m experiencing anything. I have had heartburn since I started taking it but not real often. I really hate this condition too.

#13

Hi, Linda!

I am new to thie website, and group. In case your doctor didn’t tell you, Reglan/Metoclopramide has been black labeled by the FDA due to the condition Tardive Dyskinesia (listed in comments above). Apparently it is very common in long term use of the drug. My doctor switched me to domperidone. It is a generic drug from Canada, and is the drug of choice for treatment of gastroparesis. My doctor said that the best part is, there are NO SIDE EFFECTS! I have found this to be true, and I would say the number of times that I throw up has been decreased by at least 50%.

#14

Thank you Katie! I thought that I read something like that about Reglan. Guess I will have to talk to my doctor about it.

#15

Hi Katie,

I have had Gastroparesis for a number of years and had been on Raglan for about 6 years. My Dr took me off of it last Feb due to the potential side effects. I am going to ask him about Domperidone. Do you live in the US? Is it difficult to get the drug from Canada? I was very excited to read that there is another drug out there!

#16

Hi Linda,
I was glad to read your post. I’ve had type 1 diabetes for over 50 years. I was hospitalized last year for a fecal impaction and was given Reglan. I didn’t realize it at the time but I had a horrible reaction to the Reglan. It made me very jumpy, I couldn’t stay still, couldn’t sleep, etc. This can be a side effect for some people, certainlly not all. I too had tests done that came back negative. I also knew better. I think they should come up with some more accurate tests. My blood sugars have been okay but I’ve put on a lot of weight. I don’t understand this since gastroparesis is usually associated with weight loss. I am extrememly bloated and suffer from some nausea and vomiting. The worst thing is severe constipation (autonomic dysfunction) It’s nice to know we are not alone.
Any help or advice is welcome.

#17

I too am a T1 w/ gastroparesis. I was diagnosed spring a year ago. I was put on Reglan/ Metocloprimide 4 x per day. I don’t always remember to take it 30 min. before meals. ( I truly wish something worked fatser) . I just always forget. Anyway, I was also prescribed Amitiza for the other side effects of gastoparesis, the bloating, fullness, and prblems with passing the food in a tinely manner. You takeduring the meal. I should be able to remember to take it more, but the doc said if I take it with my largest meals of the day at least, then I will see positive effects. By the way, I was diagnosed after only having a diabetes diagnosis for 3 years. I think my stomach issues started way before my T1.

I should and will do better taking my meds. You know how it goes sometimes.

I too will look into G.A.T.E. sounds informative and like a great sounding board.

#18

I was on Reglan but was recently taken off at my request. When I started taking it the nurse practitioner was careful to explain side effects. Reglan has permanent side effects – muscle jerks - that make it what the tv commercials refer to as a black box drug (whatever that means!). I took the med with reservation and when it really was not really doing me much good I questioned why bother. My endo was reviewing my med list (I have three doctors who prescribe for me) and asked me why I was still on - he said most people do not stay on for long periods of time because of side effect risks. So my gastro doctor at my request took me off. She said there are other meds if I start having problems.

I seem to control my gastroparesis with my 5 small meals a day. I keep to 300 calorie snacks/meals. I do eat some fiber – some people can’t handle - in the form of salads and veggies. I don’t eat much meat because it just sits there in my stomach. I do get the diahrea - no fun. I also have acid reflux so I take my happy little purple pill. I finally got the eating sorted out and my BS levels are good. My problem is I tend to bottom out. Luckily my endo saw my testing results for gastroparesis and knew exactly what to do, changed my insulin and I was fine.

I also have problems in the HEAT – get really dehydrated and my BS plummets. Like right now! lol Much worse than it used to be.

ANYWAYS – I gave up on the Reglan because it wasn’t effective for me and the side effect risks. I already had to be taken off of Lipitor because of muscle spasms so I just felt too at risk.

Good Luck. Everyone is different and you will find the right combo for you.

#19

I tried Reglan but it never seem to work…so I went off of it…My dr. put me back on it…but I have never heard any one say they have been helped by Reglan…
Right now I am very bloated and having a terrible time with the Gastroparesis…
It is making my quality of life miserable.
I am hungry most of the time.
I try the liquid diet for three days…but every time —I eat the stabbing pain and the nausea.
I am not throwing up as much as I used to but I feel like I have a basketball sitting in my stomach if I just eat an apple.
I have cut back on fiber and fat.
Does any one know if you can take the little packets of Green Grass( has lots of greens in it)
Will that affect the Gastroparesis.? How are we suppose to get our fiber in???

I also do a bowel tolerance test of Vitamin C with bioflavinoids…to the point of diarrhea–it cleans out the system.
You just basically put Vitamin C (powered) with Bioflavinoids in water, starting at 5000 mg…and then every half hour you drink water with 1000mgs of the Vitamin C powedered with Bioflavinoids.–until you develop diarrhea–You do have to be at home for this…the first time I did this—it took 100,000 mg before I develop diarrhea. Everyone is different —
But my body was needing the Immune System boost…so it took lots of vitamin C for me.
Dr. Maureen Salaman talks about this in her book…I have done this for years…and I believe it has saved me from getting inffections…
Dr. Linus Pauling won a nobel peace prize for his work with Vitamin C…
Gastroparesis is awful and affects your quality of life…
I feel as if I am in a 100 year old body sometimes…

My Dr. does prescribe me the ethromycin…Antibiotic…

#20

I found that the Raglan made me feel "weird" for lack of a better word. Kind of like spacy restless, jittery. I was in the hospital for a week in April and they put me on Erythromycin- normally used as an antibiotic but apparently also used for gastroperisis and it caused Severe Liver inflammation.
I was told the domperidone does have side affects... one of them being painful lactation. After reactions to everything they've put me on I really didn't want to chance this one. Maybe I should look into it again.