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Baclofen improves gastric emptying and GERD

Baclofen reduces reflux and improves esophagogastric motility in children with GERD, reports a team of doctors in October's Journal of Pediatrics.

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Baclofen is a gamma-amino-butyric-acid B receptor agonist that inhibits transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation.

Dr Taher Omari from Australia and colleagues evaluated the effect of baclofen on the rates of transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation in children with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

The research team also assessed the effect of baclofen on reflux, and gastric emptying.

The efficacy of 0.5 mg/kg baclofen was evaluated in a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial in 30 children.

Patients were intubated with a manometric/pH assembly and given 250 mL of cow's milk as a control.

Gastric emptying with baclofen was 61 minutes vs 114 with a control
Journal of Pediatrics

The team then measured esophageal motility and pH for 2 hours.

Baclofen or placebo was then administered, and 1 hour later 250 mL of milk was given again and measurements performed for another 2 hours.

The GE rate was measured by the 13C octanoate breath test.

The researchers found that baclofen significantly reduced the incidence of transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation.

The team observed that baclofen also reduced gastroesophageal reflux.

Baclofen significantly accelerated the gastric emptying.

The team noted that the gastric emptying with baclofen was 61 minutes vs 114 minutes for the control period.

Baclofen had no effect on the swallowing rate, pattern of esopageal peristalsis, or lower esophageal sphincter pressure.

Dr Omari's team concludes, “Baclofen reduces gastroesophageal reflux in children by inhibiting the triggering of transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation.”

“Baclofen also accelerates gastric emptying.”

J Ped 2006: 149(4): 468-74
12 October 2006

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