Is Mosapride Available In The United States?

In our latest question and answer, the pharmacist discusses whether or not mosapride is available in the United States and comparable products.

Question

I'm taking mosapride here in Korea and it's a total lifesaver for GERD! Will I be able to get it (or a similarly safe prokinetic) when I return to the U.S.?

Asked by Barbara On Dec 19, 2017

Answered by
Medical Content Reviewed By PharmacistAnswers Staff

On Dec 20, 2017

Mosapride is a gastrointestinal 'prokinetic' medication that is available in many countries, but not the United States unfortunately. There are a few alternatives available, but they have a slightly different mechanism of action, so they aren't directly comparable. In addition, these alternative products require a prescription for use and are not available over the counter.


Mosapride works mainly via two mechanisms:

  • 5HT4 Agonism (Serotonin receptor 4 agonist)
  • 5HT3 Antagonism (Serotonin receptor 3 antagonist)


Mosapride increases gastric emptying (i.e. stomach emptying) and is thought to induce contractions of the GI tract, all of which may help to reduce nausea, reduce the symptoms of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), as well as alleviate gastritis and gastroparesis.


Mosapride, may go by several different brand names (such as Gasmotin) but is only available in Asia, South East Asia, South America, and Japan.


The closest medication in terms of mechanism of action and indication available in the United States is called Reglan (metoclopramide). It too is classifed as a 'prokinetic' agent, but has some significant differences in regard to how it works.


Metoclopramide works via the following mechanisms:

  • Induces release of acetylcholine
  • D2 Antagonism (Dopamine receptor 2 antagonist)
  • 5HT3 Antagonism (Serotonin receptor 3 antagonist)


Metoclopramine is an effective medication for reducing nausea (and vomiting), increasing gastrointestinal motility, reducing symptoms of GERD and for the treatment of gastritis.


Unlike Mosapride, metoclopramine is only available via prescription in the United States. In most cases, it is a safe an effective drug but needs to be used with caution in certain patients. It is well known to cause sedation and very rarely can cause certain movement disorders, although this is uncommon and more of a concern in those taking conflicting medications.

About the Pharmacist

Dr. Brian Staiger Pharm.D

Dr. Brian Staiger is a licensed pharmacist in New York State and the founder of PharmacistAnswers.com. He graduated from the University At Buffalo with a Doctor Of Pharmacy degree in 2010. He has been featured in several publications including the Huffington Post as well as a variety of health and pharmacy related blogs. Please feel free to reach out to him directly if you have any questions or want to connect! [email protected]; Office: 716-389-3076

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