It is common knowledge that many cases of pain after meals are relieved by the administration of alkalis. In such instances, an underlying hyperacidity is generally assumed to exist, and the symptomatic relief is usually explained thus: The excess of acid acts as an irritant. This irritation causes a spasm of the gastric musculature, including that of the orifices of the stomach. The increased intragastric tension is painful. The administration of an alkali reduces the acidity, lessens the spasm, and dissipates the pain.
That such an explanation can be but partially true would appear from the following considerations: It cannot explain the lasting effect of the relief, since it has been shown that within a short time (e. g., one-half hour) the original gastric acidity may be reproduced; in fact, often exceeded. Similarly, after a complete clinical cure, the gastric acidity may be higher than ever. Just how do alkalis
KANTOR JL. ANTACID GASTRIC THERAPY, WITH ESPECIAL REFERENCE TO THE USE OF NEUTRAL ANTACIDS. JAMA. 1923;81(10):816–818. doi:10.1001/jama.1923.02650100024010
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: