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Safety and Efficacy of Low-dose Domperidone for Treating Nausea and Vomiting Due to Acute Gastroenteritis in Children

Leitz, Gerhard*; Hu, Peter*; Appiani, Carlos*; Li, Qing*; Mitha, Essack; Garces-Sanchez, Maria; Gupta, Rajeev§

Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition: October 2019 - Volume 69 - Issue 4 - p 425–430
doi: 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002409
Original Articles: Gastroenterology

Background: This study was conducted based on a request from the European Medicines Agency to generate robust data on domperidone efficacy in children in the relief of symptoms of nausea and vomiting by assessing the effect of a low-dose and short treatment duration.

Methods: In this randomized, double-blind, phase 3 study, children ages 6 months to 12 years with acute gastroenteritis randomly (1:1) received oral domperidone 0.25 mg/kg with oral rehydration therapy (ORT) or matching placebo thrice daily for 2 to 7 days. The proportion of patients with no vomiting episodes (primary endpoint) and patients ages ≥4 years with no nausea episodes (key secondary endpoint) within 48 hours of first treatment administration were evaluated.

Results: The study was terminated early following futility analysis. At early termination, 292 patients randomly received domperidone (n = 147) or placebo (n = 145). The proportion of patients with no vomiting episodes within 48-hours of first treatment administration was similar between domperidone (32.0%) and placebo groups (33.8%). Similarly, there was no significant difference in proportion of patients ages ≥4 years with no nausea episodes within 48 hours of first treatment administration between domperidone (35.7%) and placebo (38.6%). Total 13 patients (domperidone, 3.4% [5/147] vs placebo, 5.5% [8/145]) reported ≥1 treatment-emergent adverse events. No deaths or adverse events of special interest (extrapyramidal symptoms and QT prolongation) were reported.

Conclusions: Low-dose of domperidone with ORT did not significantly differ from placebo in reducing vomiting and nausea episodes in pediatric patients with acute gastroenteritis (AG), and the safety profile was similar between both groups.

*Janssen Research & Development, NJ

Newtown Clinical Research Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa

Nazaret Health Center, Valencia, Spain

§Barnsley Foundation Hospital NHS Trust, Barnsley, England.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Gerhard Leitz, MD, PhD, Clinical Leader, Internal Medicine, Established Products, Janssen Research & Development, LLC, 1125 Trenton-Harbourton Road, Mail stop K20 905, Titusville, NJ 08560 (e-mail:

Received 3 December, 2018

Accepted 29 April, 2019

The study was funded by the marketing authorization holders of medicinal products containing domperidone that are part of the consortium, Domperidone PAES Collaboration Group, constituting Janssen Research & Development, Research and Development, Pierre Fabre for Pierre Fabre Médicament SAS, and Esteve Pharmaceuticals, S.A.

Trial Registration: number: NCT02699385.

G.L., P.H., C.A., and Q.L. are employees of Janssen Research & Development, LLD. M.G.-S. has participated in advisory boards and speaker bureaus for GlaxoSmithKline, SPMSD, and Pfizer, for which payment is received; and she was a principal investigator in vaccine clinical trials for GlaxoSmithKline, SPMSD, Novartis, Wyeth, and Pfizer. E.M., and R.G. have no conflict of interest to declare.

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© 2019 by European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition and North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology,