Return of esophageal peristalsis after nifedipine therapy in patients with idiopathic esophageal achalasia

Am J Gastroenterol. 1992 Dec;87(12):1705-8.


This study was carried out to demonstrate the possible return of esophageal peristalsis in patients affected by esophageal achalasia chronically treated with sublingual nifedipine and to investigate which parameters are correlated with the return of peristalsis. Thirty-two patients were treated with sublingual nifedipine 10-20 mg taken 30 min before meals. A clinical and manometric evaluation was performed before and after 6 months of therapy. Before treatment, in no patient was peristaltic activity recorded. After 6 months, peristalsis was observed in six patients. In this group, no pretreatment manometric parameter was different from that of the remaining achalasic patients; only the clinical history of dysphagia was significantly shorter (p < 0.001) and the esophageal diameter significantly less (p < 0.001). In conclusion, chronic treatment with sublingual nifedipine can induce a return of esophageal peristalsis in patients with a short clinical history of disease and slightly dilated esophagus.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Sublingual
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Deglutition / physiology
  • Esophageal Achalasia / drug therapy*
  • Esophageal Achalasia / physiopathology
  • Esophagus / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Manometry
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Tonus / drug effects
  • Muscle Tonus / physiology
  • Nifedipine / therapeutic use*
  • Peristalsis / drug effects
  • Peristalsis / physiology


  • Nifedipine