What Are The Risks Of Pepcid During Pregnancy
There are no risks to the mother or fetus, says G. Thomas Ruiz, MD, OB-GYN lead at MemorialCare Orange Coast Medical Center. Even though Pepcid does cross the placenta, Ruiz says there have been no known ill-effects in babies.
Because of the physiologic changes in pregnancy, Ruiz says there may be increased renal clearance of Pepcid. In plain language, this means you may need to take a higher dose. But check with your doctor.
While its best to avoid unnecessary medications during pregnancy unless specifically recommended by your doctor, Gerber says the available data is reassuring that Pepcid doesnt lead to increase risk in pregnant versus nonpregnant people.
However, before you take Pepcid, Ross says to consult with your doctor if you have a history of kidney or liver disease, asthma, COPD, or breathing problems.
Some of the more common side effects of Pepcid include:
Dietary and lifestyle changes can help reduce heartburn, indigestion, and acid reflux during pregnancy. Whenever possible, Gerber recommends trying these interventions before starting a medication.
Remedies that may help reduce heartburn, indigestion, or acid reflux include the following:
When it comes to OTC medications to try before using Pepcid, Ross says products such as Tums or Maalox help coat the esophagus, which minimizes the burning sensation. Both are safe in pregnancy.
For optimal results, Ross recommends taking these medications 30 minutes before each meal and before bedtime.
Famotidine: Most Effective Heartburn Medication
If youâre in search of a strong relief from heartburn that is relatively cost-effective, Famotidine may be the right option for you. Pepcid is an H2 blocker that works by lowering the levels of acid produced in the stomach. Through this, Pepcid is not only effective in relieving heartburn but also in treating acid reflux.
Pepcid is a viable option in treating heartburn, as it is relatively fast-acting and long-lasting. On average, after taking Pepcid, individuals report noticing relief of heartburn within an hour, and typically, the effects of famotidine last for 10 to 12 hours after an initial dose. Pepcid is also a medication that can be purchased OTC or as a prescription. This unique flexibility of Pepcid allows it to be relatively accessible for all patients while also being capable of coming in higher doses for those who need more intense care. For an OTC pack of Pepcid, the average cost is typically under $10.
Famotidine is best taken with a glass of water. Additionally, it can be taken with or without food. The most common side effects of famotidine include a headache or gastrointestinal pain .
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Special Considerations In The Elderly
GERD appears to be more common and more severe in the elderly than in younger individuals in fact age is an important risk factor for the development of severe forms of GERD . In the primary care setting in the US, as many as 20% of older patients report acid reflux , and in a Japanese study, the prevalence of erosive esophagitis in patients aged > 70 years was more than triple the prevalence in patients younger than 39 years . In common with the general population, the intensity and frequency of heartburn and other symptoms of GERD are poor predictors of the presence or severity of esophageal manifestations. In addition, older patients are less likely to experience severe heartburn than younger patients and the majority do not experience acid regurgitation as an initial symptom . More frequently, elderly patients with GERD report symptoms such as dysphagia, vomiting and respiratory difficulties, anorexia, weight loss, and anemia-melena . Because of this different symptom profile of GERD in the elderly, the disease, particularly in milder form, may remain undiagnosed for a considerable period of time resulting in hospital admittance for more severe disease .
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About The Supplements Touted For Heartburn Relief
OTC digestive enzymes claim they can help you break down food, just like digestive enzymes your own body makes . For example, theres
- lipase, which breaks down fats
- amylase, which breaks down carbohydrates
- proteases and peptidases, which break down proteins.
The supplement versions of these enzymes come from plants and animals. Plant sources include bromelain, derived from pineapples papain, derived from papayas and lactase thats obtained from purified yeasts or fungi. Animal sources include enzymes from the pancreases of pigs, cows, or lambs.
But theres no way to know whats really in supplements. The FDA does not regulate them, therefore you cant be sure what the pills are really made of or the exact amounts of enzymes they may contain. Its buyer beware, warns Dr. Kyle Staller, a gastroenterologist at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.
Are Pepcid Nexium Prilosec And Tums The Same Thing
No. While they all can help treat acid reflux, they work differently and therefore have different use cases. Pepcid and Nexium/Prilosec belong to two different drug classes. Pepcid is an H2-blocker and Nexium/Prilosec are PPIs, and though they both decrease stomach acid, they work in different ways in your body. Both classes are used to treat and prevent recurrence of stomach and duodenal ulcers. Pepcid is mainly useful in relieving mild, infrequent heartburn while Nexium/Prilosec is useful in managing frequent heartburn that occurs 2 or more days a week.
Tums, on the other hand, belongs to a separate drug class. It is an antacid. It goes to work in seconds to start neutralizing gastric acid in the esophagus, where the pain of heartburn starts. It keeps working as it dissolves, going to work fast to relieve the pain of heartburn. Because of its rapid mechanism of action, Tums is most appropriate for mild, infrequent heartburn and is not effective alone for moderate heartburn symptoms .
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Mylicon: Best Heartburn Medication For Children
Unlike the other medications, mylicon is actually an anti-foaming agent that can act as an antacid for children ages 2-11. Mylicon has an active ingredient, Simethicone, that gently breaks up gas bubbles in the stomach. Additionally, it contains Calcium Carbonate, which is an antacid.
Mylicon was specifically designed to soothe discomfort from gas, acid, indigestion, overeating, and bloating. It is a fast-acting medication you can pick up OTC and typically costs only $11 for 15 milliliters. For most children, Mylicon starts working in just minutes following consumption.
The only potential side effect of Mylicon is loose stools. However, only use Mylicon for your child as directed and no more than 12 times per day. See below for the suggested doses of Mylicon to give your child.
Dosage: How Much Pepcid Ac Should I Take
The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor’s orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For oral dosage forms :
- To prevent an ulcer from coming back:
- Adults20 milligrams once a day.
- ChildrenUse and dose must be determined by your doctor.
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Ppis Can Change The Way Other Drugs Work
PPIs interact with some common prescription drugs. For example, some PPIs can reduce the blood-thinning effect of the drug Plavix , according to the US Food and Drug Administration. This can increase the risk of heart attack and even death. If you take Plavix, talk to your doctor about whether you should take a PPI.
Can I Take Nexium Prilosec And Tums Together
Yes, antacids like Tums may be taken with either Nexium or Prilosec to provide prompt heartburn relief. For example, if you experience heartburn symptoms while taking PPI, you may take an antacid to relieve it. However, keep in mind that there needs to be a gap of 2 hours between taking an antacid and a PPI to avoid drug interactions.
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Dear Doctor: Pepcid Or Prilosec For Acid Reflux
Famotidine works quickly and is a good choice for people with more occasional symptoms.
DEAR DR. ROACH: What are your thoughts of Pepcid versus Prilosec for stomach reflux? My husband isnt getting much relief from Prilosec, and his doctor recommended switching. — D.L.G.
ANSWER: Omeprazole is a much more effective suppressor of acid reflux than famotidine , and is more effective for most people — if it is used daily. Omeprazole is not a good choice for intermittent use. It takes a few days for the medicine to reach full effectiveness. Famotidine works well and very quickly, and is a good choice for people with more occasional symptoms.
When omeprazole isnt working, a trial of famotidine is reasonable, but I would reconsider the diagnosis if he doesnt get relief. People can have stomach upset without reflux. The older term dyspepsia or functional dyspepsia is used. Further evaluation may be indicated.
* * *
Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers may email questions to or send mail to 628 Virginia Dr., Orlando, FL 32803.
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Rated For Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Pepcid really works Like many people with IC, I also have IBS and acid reflux. I took Elmiron with great results for the IC for about 6 months but the side effects finally got the better of me . I read cmelehani’s review on Remedyfind and talked it over with my Urologist. We decided that I would go off the Elimron for a bit and try the Pepcid. The first week was tough. I had a lot of diarrhea and almost gave up. But after my body adjusted to the Pepcid I began to feel better. Not only did the flares subside but the IBS all but disappeared. I have been on the Pepcid since Aug 4th. . What a recovery! Thank you cmelehani for the great idea. I now have energy and have even tried a couple of forbidden fruits with no ill effects what so ever. My stomach feels better too. With all the pain I had with the IC and the IBS I never realized that my stomach was always in knots. I’m a new person.
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New Information May Affect Your Approach To Treatment
Millions of people turn to prescription and over-the-counter medications to cope with heartburn from gastroesophageal reflux disease or other stomach conditions. But navigating the risks of heartburn remedies can leave a sour taste in your mouth, since some have been tied to health concerns. Here’s what you need to know about two mainstays of treatment, and how the latest developments may affect you.
More Common Side Effects
The more common adult side effects for this drug are slightly different from the more common side effects for children.
- Adult side effects can include:
If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. If theyre more severe or dont go away, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
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Who Can And Cannot Take Gaviscon
Gaviscon can be taken by most adults and children aged 12 and over.
If your baby or child has problems with reflux or indigestion, talk to your doctor as soon as you can. Only treat them with Gaviscon if their doctor prescribes it.
To make sure this medicine is safe for you, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have:
- ever had an allergic reaction to Gaviscon or any other medicines
- been advised to eat a low calcium or low salt diet
- kidney or heart disease
Never give Gaviscon to children under 12, unless their doctor prescribes it.
Stomach Acid Itself Is Not The Issue
Question: who suffers more from acid reflux and GERD, teenagers or older adults? Many studies have shown that GERD increases with age. Studies also show that the production of stomach acid decreases with age. This is one indication that idea that the amount of stomach acid is not the cause of heartburn, acid reflux, and GERD, because, if it were, the problem would be more prevalent in younger people not older people.
Now lets look at your anatomy. As food moves from your esophagus to your stomach, it passes through the Lower Esophageal Sphincter . The LES is a valve whose job is to open up to let food pass into the stomach and then remain closed to keep it there. When stomach acid flows backwards into your esophagus, it is because the valve has not done its job. When the LES works properly, it doesnt matter how much acid is in your stomach, because the valve will keep it where it belongs.
The question then becomes: what is happening in the stomach that is pushing the acid back up through the LES valve?
One cause is low levels of stomach acid. Yes, you read that correctly. Having too little acid in the stomach leads to acid reflux.
Stomach acid breaks down food for digestion. In order to do that job, the pH level must be within a certain range. The pH levels also signal the opening of the valves at both ends of the stomach. When pH levels are normal, digestion occurs as it should, and food moves from the esophagus to the stomach to the small intestine.
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What If I Forget To Take It
If you usually take Gaviscon regularly but forget to take a dose, do not double your dose the next time. Just leave out the missed dose and take your next dose as normal.
If you forget doses often, it may help to set an alarm to remind you. You could also ask your pharmacist for advice on other ways to help you remember to take your medicine.
Getting The Most From Your Treatment
- A course of treatment can vary in length depending upon the reason why you are taking famotidine. You could be asked to take the tablets for a few weeks or for several months. Keep any appointments that you have booked with your doctor so that your progress can be checked.
- Some people say that certain foods make their symptoms worse. Foods and drinks that have been suspected of this include peppermint, tomatoes, chocolate, spicy foods, hot drinks, coffee and alcoholic drinks. If it seems that a food is aggravating your symptoms, try avoiding it for a while to see if your symptoms improve. Also, try avoiding eating large meals, as these can make your symptoms worse too.
- If you are overweight, this puts extra pressure on your stomach and encourages the symptoms of acid reflux. Losing some weight and eating a healthy balanced diet may help you.
- Smoking increases the amount of acid produced by the stomach and may make your symptoms worse. If you are a smoker, speak with your doctor or pharmacist about how to quit.
- If you buy any medicines ‘over the counter’, always check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take alongside your other medicines.
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Soothe Indigestion And Bloating With Over
Sarah is a freelance writer with a focus on health and wellness. She has written for publications like Womens Health, Healthline, and Parents. She taught creative writing for five years, and has a bachelors degree in English from Southern Connecticut State University.
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When heartburn or acid indigestion strikes, you need something that settles your stomach ASAP. Its no fun to walk around feeling like you have your own personal fire-breathing dragon raging in your esophagus, and its even less fun to battle the burn while trying to work, exercise, drive through rush hour traffic, or sleep.
If youre prone to bouts of GI distress, its smart to have a reliable over-the-counter antacid on hand that can provide quick relief. Why? Because these medications can decrease the amount of stomach acid you produce, says University of Missouri Health Care gastroenterologist Yezaz Ghouri, MD.
The stomach normally produces hydrochloric acid to help digest food and kill bacteria or other organisms that may have been ingested along with the food, Dr. Ghouri explains. When there is an overproduction of the acid, it can lead to stomach discomfort.