Document Detail

Review article: erythromycin as a prokinetic agent in infants and children.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11328252     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Erythromycin has been used as an antibiotic for more than four decades, but only in the last 10 years have other therapeutic benefits of this agent been exploited. Animal and human studies have demonstrated a prokinetic effect on the gastrointestinal tract at sub-antimicrobial doses (typically a quarter or less of the antibiotic dose). A limited number of studies have been performed in children to investigate this action. A review of this literature is particularly pertinent given the frequency of clinical problems related to gastrointestinal dysmotility in children and the limited availability of prokinetic agents in paediatric practice, compounded by the recent withdrawal of cisapride. The prokinetic effects of erythromycin have been investigated in infants with dysmotility associated with prematurity, in low birth-weight infants recovering from abdominal surgery, and in older children with a variety of other gastrointestinal disorders. Only one randomized placebo-controlled trial has been conducted. All except one of these studies have shown a beneficial effect of erythromycin in either promoting tolerance of enteral feeds or enhancing a measured index of gastrointestinal motility. Erythromycin appears to be equally effective when given orally (as ethylsuccinate or estolate) or intravenously (as lactobionate). Significantly, no serious adverse effects have been reported in studies in which erythromycin has been used for its prokinetic effects, although fatal reactions have followed the intravenous administration of erythromycin to neonates in antibiotic doses.
J I Curry; T D Lander; M D Stringer
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Alimentary pharmacology & therapeutics     Volume:  15     ISSN:  0269-2813     ISO Abbreviation:  Aliment. Pharmacol. Ther.     Publication Date:  2001 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-04-30     Completed Date:  2001-12-04     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8707234     Medline TA:  Aliment Pharmacol Ther     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  595-603     Citation Subset:  IM    
British Association of Paediatric Surgeons, The Royal College of Surgeons of England, London, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Administration, Oral
Child, Preschool
Erythromycin / pharmacology*
Gastroesophageal Reflux / drug therapy*
Gastrointestinal Agents / pharmacology*
Gastrointestinal Motility / drug effects*
Infant, Newborn
Infusions, Intravenous
Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Gastrointestinal Agents; 114-07-8/Erythromycin

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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