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Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2004 Nov 1;20(9):975-82.

A single dose of ranitidine 150 mg modulates oesophageal acid sensitivity in patients with functional heartburn.

Author information

1
Oklahoma Foundation for Digestive Research, Oklahoma City, OK 73104, USA. sheila-stanley@ouhsc.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The rapid onset and symptomatic response to histamine-2 receptor antagonists prior to the pharmacological effect on acid secretion suggests a different mechanism of action.

AIM:

To determine if ranitidine decreases oesophageal sensitivity to chemical and mechanical stimulation, potentially via oesophageal histamine receptors.

METHODS:

A total of 18 patients with functional heartburn received oral ranitidine 150 mg b.d. or placebo for 7 consecutive days in a double-blind randomized crossover design and underwent Barostat balloon distention and Bernstein acid infusion on study day 1 (90 min postdose) and study day 7. First sensation and pain were recorded and pain severity was rated on a 5-point Likert scale and a 100 mm visual analogue scale. Least square mean values were generated and one-tailed t-tests were performed.

RESULTS:

After a single dose of ranitidine 150 mg, time to pain with oesophageal acid infusion was increased by 29% (P < 0.05) and visual analogue scale and Likert scores were decreased by 20% (P < 0.06) and 23% (P < 0.02), respectively compared with placebo. After 1 week of ranitidine, positive alterations in sensory parameters persisted. Balloon distention sensory parameters were not altered by ranitidine.

CONCLUSIONS:

Ranitidine significantly decreased oesophageal sensitivity to acid. Failure of ranitidine to improve balloon sensory parameters supports existence of multiple sensory pathways in the oesophagus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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