What is the role of smooth muscle relaxants in the treatment of esophageal motility disorders?

Updated: Dec 29, 2017
  • Author: Eric A Gaumnitz, MD; Chief Editor: Praveen K Roy, MD, AGAF  more...
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Answer

Smooth muscle relaxants, including nitrates and calcium channel blockers, were the first medications to be used in all patients with esophageal motility disorders. The greatest experience has been with isosorbide dinitrate and nifedipine. The efficacy of these agents was demonstrated in case reports and retrospective studies primarily. Other drugs used less extensively include different types of anticholinergics, amyl nitrite, nitroglycerin, theophylline, beta2-agonists, and, recently, phosphodiesterase inhibitors. The experience with these drugs is limited.


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