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Volume 2016, Article ID 5797804, 5 pages
Research Article

Use of Serotonergic Drugs in Canada for Gastrointestinal Motility Disorders: Results of a Retrospective Cohort Study

Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, University Hospital, Western University, Rm C8-114, 339 Windermere Road, London, ON, Canada N6A 5A5

Received 27 December 2015; Revised 10 March 2016; Accepted 5 April 2016

Academic Editor: Anna P. Malykhina

Copyright © 2016 Biniam Kidane et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Surgery for GI dysmotility is limited to those with severe refractory disease. Though effective, use of serotonergic promotility drugs has been restricted in Canada due to adverse events. We aimed to investigate utilization of promotility serotonergic drugs in patients under consideration for surgical management. Methods. A retrospective cohort study was conducted using prospectively collected data. The study population included consecutive patients referred to a motility clinic for consideration of bowel resection at a Canadian tertiary hospital (1996–2011). Univariable tests and multivariable logistic regression analyses were used to assess predictors of serotonergic drug use. Results. Of 128 patients, the majority (, 76.6%) had constipation-dominant symptoms. Only 25% () had tried serotonergic promotility drugs. There was no association between use of these drugs and severity of constipation nor was there an association between serotonergic drug use and presence of diffuse dysmotility (all ). The majority of patients (, 75.8%) underwent some type of surgical resection, which was associated with considerable morbidity (, 13.4%). Conclusions. Surgical management of GI dysmotility results in serious morbidity. Serotonergic promotility drugs may allow patients to avoid surgery but disease severity does not predict use of these drugs.