Comparison of Cimetidine and Placebo for the Prophylaxis of Upper Gastrointestinal Bleeding Due to Stress-related Gastric Mucosal Damage in the Intensive Care Unit


Journal Article

A multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo- controlled study was conducted with 87 patients in in tensive care units to study the effectiveness of constant infusions of cimetidine (50 mg/hr) in the prophylaxis of stress-related mucosal bleeding. Fifty-four patients re ceived cimetidine and 33 received placebo. The groups were comparable by age, sex, and severity of illness. One (2%) of the 54 patients receiving cimetidine had upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage and 7 (21%) of the 33 patients receiving placebo had upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage (p = 0.002). The risk of bleeding for every 100 patient days in intensive care units was reduced by 94% in the patients receiving cimetidine. Constant infu sion cimetidine was well tolerated. Only one patient (cimetidine) developed pneumonia during the study, but it was not considered to be related to drug therapy. No patients experienced adverse drug interactions. Two patients (4%) experienced reversible side effects from treatment. Cimetidine, administered as a continuous in travenous 50-mg/hour infusion, is safe and significantly more effective than placebo for preventing upper gas trointestinal bleeding in critically ill patients. © 1990, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Karlstadt, RG; Iberti, TJ; Silverstein, J; Lindenberg, L; Rright-Asare, P; Rockhold, F; Young, MD

Published Date

  • January 1, 1990

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 5 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 26 - 32

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1525-1489

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0885-0666

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1177/088506669000500106

Citation Source

  • Scopus