Infantile gastroesophageal reflux: Adherence to treatment guidelines in the hospital setting

Heather A. Long, Lauren Solski, Jill A. Rebuck, Colin Bridgeman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES Recent guidelines defined and differentiated the management of gastroesophageal reflux (GER) and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). The guidelines recommend against using empiric acid suppression therapy for infantile GER. The primary objective of this study was to assess inpatient guideline adherence regarding management of infantile GER through the perspective of pharmacists. Secondary objectives included assessing pharmacist comfort level with differentiation between GER and GERD, observing current trends in practice relating to the primary objective, and determining the availability of institution-specific guidelines that address the management of infantile GER. METHODS An institutional review board−approved, national, online survey of pharmacists with inpatient pediatric experience was conducted. Pediatric pharmacy membership directories were used to create the listserv of eligible pharmacists. The 2009 NASPGHAN/ESPGHAN (North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition/European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition) Pediatric Gastroesophageal Reflux Clinical Practice Guideline was used to develop the survey and to define both GER and GERD. Demographic data was also collected regarding the institutional setting and pharmacists responding. RESULTS The overall response rate was 14.8% (n = 149). Although 29.7% of pharmacists stated empiric acid suppression trials were not used for infantile GER at their institution, 44.6% responded that these trials are initiated 1 to 2 times per week in their hospitals. In addition, 19.6% responded that these empiric trials were initiated 3 to 5 times per week. A smaller percentage of responders reported even higher frequencies per week at their institutions. CONCLUSIONS From the results of the survey, infants continue to receive empiric acid suppression trials for GER in the inpatient setting, which is not adherent to the current guideline recommendation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-47
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Pediatric Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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