Metoclopramide is a medication used mostly for stomach and esophageal problems. It is commonly used to treat and prevent nausea and vomiting, to help with emptying of the stomach in people with delayed stomach emptying, and to help with gastroesophageal reflux disease. It is also used to treat migraine headaches.
Common side effects include: feeling tired, diarrhea, and feeling restless. More serious side effects include: movement disorder like tardive dyskinesia, a condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome, and depression. It is thus rarely recommended that people take the medication for longer than twelve weeks. No evidence of harm has been found after being taken by many pregnant women. It belongs to the group of medications known as dopamine-receptor antagonists and works as a prokinetic.
In 2012, metoclopramide was one of the top 100 most prescribed medications in the United States. It is on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, the safest and most effective medicines needed in a health system. It is available as a generic medication. The wholesale cost in the developing world as of 2014 is US$0.003 to US$0.08 per pill. In the United States a month worth of medication is generally less than US$25. In 2016 it was the 250th most prescribed medication in the United States with more than 1 million prescriptions