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March 25, 1983

A Treatment for Hiccups

JAMA. 1983;249(12):1566. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330360020017

To the Editor.—  Hiccups are a common and annoying symptom for which many remedies have been tried without consistent success.1,2 Stimulation of the nasopharynx with a plastic or rubber suction catheter was reported as successful in 84 of 85 patients.2 Although this is an impressive rate, this is a procedure that may be at least mildly unpleasant and would require the availability of such a catheter and a certain degree of medical expertise. In addition, suction of secretions is sometimes required to achieve optimal results.During the past 12 years, I have had occasion to use a simpler procedure that involves oropharyngeal stimulation and that has been almost 100% successful in the dozen or so persons in whom it has been attempted. It involves no special medical equipment and can easily be performed at home by a layperson who is trying to help a friend or relative suffering