It has been suggested by various authors that digitalis causes an increase in gastric and intestinal motility. In the volume by Meyer and Gottlieb1 entitled "Experimental Pharmacology," work (which was done in 1906) is reported on to the effect that digitalis glucosides influence gastric and intestinal peristalsis. Vail2 by means of the roentgen ray observed that digitalis increased gastric motility. Cloetta3 stated that digitalis causes an increased gastric secretion. Since Hellebrandt4 has shown that gastric secretion and motility run parallel (at least during fasting), the observation of Cloetta is significant. A rather careful review of the literature, however, has failed to disclose any well controlled experiments which conclusively demonstrated that digitalis actually decreased the emptying time of the stomach. It was therefore thought worth while to investigate this problem. Material and data5 were at hand which facilitated the execution of this study.
VAN LIERE EJ, SLEETH CK. IMMEDIATE EFFECT OF TINCTURE OF DIGITALIS ON EMPTYING TIME OF HUMAN STOMACH. Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1938;61(1):83–86. doi:10.1001/archinte.1938.00180070088006