What is the role of gastric lavage in the treatment of calcium channel blocker (CCB) toxicity?

Updated: Jan 04, 2021
  • Author: B Zane Horowitz, MD, FACMT; Chief Editor: Michael A Miller, MD  more...
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Answer

Gastric lavage is especially important for patients who may have taken a large dose of medication or for those who have ingested sustained-release preparations.

However, the usefulness of gastric lavage is still debated. Weigh the risk of aspiration against the probability of removing undigested medications remaining in the stomach. Placement of an endotracheal tube before performing the lavage protects the airway and reduces the risk of aspiration.

If gastric lavage is performed, use a large-bore orogastric hose. Sustained-release tablets, which are large and resistant to breakdown, may not fit through a simple Salem sump nasogastric tube.


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