Metoclopramide

General Description: Metoclopramide is an affordable drug used in dogs and cats to prevent nausea, vomiting and esophageal reflux (stomach acid backing up into the throat). It helps move food and hairballs from the stomach into the intestines. It is also used during cancer chemotherapy to prevent vomiting and other side effects. Metoclopramide is available in 5 mg and 10 mg tablets or as an oral syrup, 1 mg and 10 mg/mL.

What is this drug?

Upper gastrointestinal tract motility stimulant; anti-emetic
May be given by injection in the veterinary clinic or may be given by mouth
Reasons for prescribing:

To prevent nausea and vomiting by normalizing stomach motility
Moves food and hairballs from the stomach into the intestines
Prevent esophageal reflux (stomach acid backing up into the esophagus)
Used after surgery and during cancer chemotherapy to prevent nausea and vomiting
What dogs/cats should not take this medication?

Avoid using in pregnant or nursing pets
Pets with pheochromocytoma (a rare adrenal tumor)
Pets with a history of seizures. Metoclopramide may cause seizures in these pets.
Pets suspected to have a stomach or intestinal obstruction, bleeding or perforation
Use with caution in pets with kidney disease, diabetes or high blood pressure or recent stomach surgery
If your pet has had an earlier allergic reaction to metoclopramide or like products (ex. PABA sunscreens)
Directions:

Metoclopramide should be given 20-30 minutes before a meal. Give each dose with plenty of water.

Give the exact amount prescribed and only as often as directed. It is usually giventhree to four times a day .

Read and follow the label carefully.

Give this medication for as long as veterinarian directs. Do not skip doses or stop giving the medication without consulting your veterinarian.

Oral suspensions are available but notoriously unpalatable to pets.

Call ahead for refills.

Ideally, give the medication at the same time(s) daily.

What if a dose is missed?

If a dose is missed, give it as soon as you can. If it is time already for the next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to the normal schedule. Do not give two doses at the same time.

What to tell/ask veterinarian before giving medication?

Talk to your veterinarian about:

When will your pet need to be rechecked
What tests may need to be performed prior to and during treatment with this drug
Risks and benefits of using this drug
Tell your veterinarian about:

If your pet has experienced side-effects on other drugs/products
If your pet has experienced digestive upset now or ever
If your pet has experienced any other medical problems or allergies now or ever
If your pet is pregnant or nursing or if you plan to breed your pet
Storage and Warnings:

Store in a tight, light resistant, childproof container in a cool, dry place at room temperature away from heat and direct sunlight.

Keep this and all medication out of reach of children and pets.

Metoclopramide is very similar to the sunscreen ingredient PABA. Humans allergic to sunscreens should avoid contact with metoclopramide.

Possible side effects:

Animals predisposed to seizures may experience seizures. This should not happen in ‘normal’ animals.
Drowsiness, or marked hyperactivity, frenzy and/or disorientation
Constipation, behavior and attitude changes
If you notice any of these symptoms or anything else unusual, discontinue metoclopramide and contact your veterinarian
Can this drug be given with other drugs?

Yes, but possible interactions may occur with acetaminophen, aspirin/acetylsalicylic acid, atropine, cimetidine, cyclosporine, diazepam, digoxin, insulin, MAOIs (ex. Anipryl, Preventic Flea Collar), narcotic analgesics, phenothiazine tranquillizers (ex. acepromazine), probantheline bromide, sedatives and tetracycline.
Since metoclopramide increases the movement of gastrointestinal contents, it can affect the absorption rates of many oral drugs
If your pet experiences any unusual reactions when taking multiple medications, contact your veterinarian.
Overdosing?

Contact your veterinarian immediately if pet eats more than the prescribed amount.

What else should I know?

Notify your veterinarian if your animal’s condition does not improve or worsens despite this treatment.

As with all prescribed medicines, metoclopramide should only be given to the pet for which it was prescribed. It should be given only for the condition for which it was prescribed.

This is just a summary of information about metoclopramide. If you have any questions or concerns about metoclopramide or the condition it was prescribed for, contact your veterinarian.

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