Comparison of the effects of glucagon and atropine sulfate on gastric emptying

Am J Gastroenterol. 1978 Dec;70(6):581-6.


Six asymptomatic adult males cooperated in a study of gastric emptying. Each subject was given a test meal of 500 ml. of 3.5% glucose on a fasting stomach. Ten minutes prior to the meal each was given either 1 mg atropine sulfate, placebo, or 2 mg. glucagon, double-blind and crossover. Each drug was given twice, intravenously, in a random order. The meal was removed by a Salem sump tube half an hour after ingestion. When compared to placebo, the active drugs significantly (P less than 0.05) slowed gastric emptying; atropine sulfate was more effective (P less than 0.05) than glucagon. The active drugs significantly (P 0.05) decreased total gastric acid secretion and total gastric chloride as compared to placebo. Glucagon significantly (P 0.05) increased the blood glucose concentration as compared to placebo. These results indicate that both glucagon and atropine sulfate slow the gastric emptying of a liquid sugar meal from the stomach.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Atropine / administration & dosage
  • Atropine / adverse effects
  • Atropine / pharmacology*
  • Chlorides / metabolism
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Gastric Emptying / drug effects*
  • Gastric Juice / metabolism
  • Glucagon / administration & dosage
  • Glucagon / adverse effects
  • Glucagon / pharmacology*
  • Glucose / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Placebos
  • Secretory Rate / drug effects


  • Chlorides
  • Placebos
  • Atropine
  • Glucagon
  • Glucose