Short Communication

Supportive Care in Cancer

, Volume 20, Issue 11, pp 3009-3011

Successful treatment of intractable hiccups by oral application of lidocaine

  • Thomas NeuhausAffiliated withSt. Vincenz-Hospital Email author 
  • , Yon-Dschun KoAffiliated withJohanniter-Hospital
  • , Sebastian StierAffiliated withPrivate Practice for Hematology and Oncology

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Persistent and intractable hiccups are a rather rare, but distressing gastrointestinal symptom found in palliative care patients. Although several recommendations for treatment are given, hiccups often persist.

Case reports

We describe a new pharmacological approach for successfully treating hiccups in four cancer patients. In the first patient, chronic and intractable hiccups lasted for more than 18 months, but disappeared immediately after swallowing a viscous 2 % lidocaine solution for treatment of mucositis. Based on this experience, we successfully treated three further patients suffering from singultus using a lidocaine-containing gel. To our knowledge, this is the first report about managing hiccups by oral application of a lidocaine solution.


Hiccups Treatment Lidocaine Oral application