1 What is Reglan?

Brand: Reglan

Generic: Metoclopramide

Reglan is used to treat different conditions such as slow gastric emptying in people with diabetes (also called diabetic gastroparesis), heartburn caused by gastroesophageal reflux disease and nausea, vomiting, heartburn, loss of appetite, and a feeling of fullness after meals.

It works by increasing muscle contraction of the upper digestive tract which increases the rate of stomach emptying into the intestine.

It may also be used for other condition such as:

  • Nausea and vomiting caused by other medicines,
  • persistent hiccups,
  • prevention of aspirating fluid into the lungs during surgery
  • vascular headaches.

It is available in solution form, only with your doctor’s prescription.

2 What to Know Before Using

If you are about to start Reglan, speak with your doctor about what you need to know.


Inform your doctor if you are allergic to any food, preservatives, dyes, or had an allergic reaction when you used this drug before.


There are no adequate studies were done which proves Metoclopramide harmful effects in children, However, safety and efficacy have not been established.


This medicine does not cause any different side effects or problem than it does in younger adults. However, it should be used with caution in a patient who has kidney or liver diseases or tardive dyskinesia.


It is a category B drug. It is safe in pregnancy.

Breast Feeding

Metoclopramide can pass into breast milk and can harm your baby. Do not breast-feed while using it. If you are using it while nursing, discuss the potential risks with your doctor.

Drug Interactions

Metoclopramide may interact with other drugs. Your doctor should be informed of any other medicines which you are taking. He may want to change the dosage or drug. Some of them are listed below:

  • Amitriptyline
  • Amoxapine
  • Bupropion
  • Chlorpromazine
  • Citalopram
  • Doxepin
  • Duloxetine
  • Escitalopram
  • Fluoxetine
  • Fluphenazine
  • Haloperidol
  • Iloperidone
  • Imipramine
  • Loxapine
  • Maprotiline
  • Mesoridazine
  • Nortriptyline
  • Olanzapine
  • Paliperidone
  • Paroxetine
  • Quetiapine
  • Risperidone
  • Rivastigmine
  • Thioridazine
  • Venlafaxine
  • Ziprasidone

This is not a complete list of drugs. Inform your doctor of any other drug which is using.

Other Medical Problem

Several other conditions may reduce its effectiveness.

Make sure you inform your doctor of conditions such as:

  • Bowels or stomach problems (bleeding, intestinal blockage, perforation)
  • Pheochromocytoma (adrenal gland tumor)
  • Seizures or epilepsy
  • Asthma
  • Cirrhosis (liver disease)
  • Heart diseases (congestive heart failure, ventricular arrhythmia)
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Mental depression
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome
  • Parkinson's disease, history of
  • Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency (an enzyme problem)
  • Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) cytochrome reductase deficiency (an enzyme problem)
  • Kidney disease

3 Proper Usage

Proper usage of Reglan requires strict adherence to your doctor’s orders. It is given as an injection through a needle into your vein or muscle by a doctor or by a trained health professional. When condition improves, your doctor may switch you to an oral dosage form.

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Reglan, there are some precautions you must take. Your doctor should check your daily progress at regular visits. He may want a blood or urine test to check for unwanted effects.

Metoclopramide may cause drowsiness, dizziness, blurred vision, or light-headedness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Metoclopramide with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.

Avoid drinking alcohol or taking other medications that are CNS depressants (sedatives, tranquilizers, barbiturates, antihistamines, muscle relaxants or anesthetics) while taking Metoclopramide. It will add to the effects of alcohol and other depressants.

A condition called tardive dyskinesia may develop with the use of Metoclopramide. It is an involuntary and uncontrollable movement.

Inform your doctor if you notice following symptoms such as:

  • Involuntary movements of the tongue, face, mouth, or jaw (protrusion of tongue, puffing of cheeks, puckering of mouth, chewing movements),
  • sometimes accompanied by involuntary movements of the arms and legs.

The risk is higher if you take this medicine for more than 12 weeks.

It is also known to cause the neuroleptic malignant syndrome. It symptoms are:

  • convulsions (seizures)
  • the difficulty with breathing
  • a fast heartbeat
  • a high fever
  • high or low blood pressure
  • increased sweating
  • loss of bladder control
  • severe muscle stiffness
  • unusually pale skin or tiredness

Inform your doctor immediately if you have any of these symptoms.

Inform your doctor immediately if you have following symptoms such as:

  • inability to move the eyes
  • increased blinking or spasms of the eyelid
  • trouble with breathing, speaking or swallowing
  • uncontrolled tongue movements
  • uncontrolled twisting movements of the neck, trunk, arms or legs
  • unusual facial expressions
  • the weakness of the arms and legs

5 Potential Side Effects

As with many medications, there are several potential side effects associated with Reglan. Some people may experience none or minor side effects.

Consult with your doctor if they become problematic or frequent:

More common are:

  • Feeling restless
  • Drowsy
  • Headache
  • Sleep problems (insomnia)
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Breast tenderness or swelling
  • Changes in your menstrual periods
  • Urinating more than usual

Serious side effects are:

  • Slow or jerky muscle movements
  • Problems with balance or walking
  • Mask like appearance in your face
  • Very stiff (rigid) muscles
  • High fever
  • Sweating
  • Confusion
  • Fast or uneven heartbeats
  • Tremors
  • Depressed mood
  • Thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself.
  • Hallucinations
  • Anxiety
  • Jittery feeling
  • Feeling short of breath
  • Jaundice (yellowing of your skin or eyes)
  • Seizure (convulsions)

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.