Pepcid

Generic Name: Famotidine

  • What is Pepcid?

    Pepcid is a medicine that works by decreasing the amount of acid the stomach produces. It is used for the short-term treatment of active duodenal (first part of the upper intestine) and stomach ulcers, and for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition in which the acid contents of the stomach flow back into the esophagus.

    Pepcid is also prescribed for certain diseases that cause the stomach to produce excessive quantities of acid, such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.

    Pepcid is available for oral use as tablets or suspension. It is also available as an intravenous injection.

    The over-the-counter Pepcid AC products are used for relief and prevention of heartburn associated with indigestion and sour stomach.

  • What is the most important information I should know about Pepcid?

    Do not stop taking Pepcid without first talking to your doctor. It may take up to 8 weeks for an ulcer to heal.

    Pepcid may cause dizziness. This effect may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.

    Notify your doctor if you have any symptoms of a bleeding ulcer, such as black, tarry stools or vomit that looks like coffee grounds.

    Do not take antacids within 1 hour of taking Pepcid. Antacids may decrease the effectiveness of Pepcid.

    You can help avoid heartburn and acid indigestion by not lying down soon after eating; keeping your weight down; quitting smoking or at least cutting down; and not eating just before bedtime.

    Avoid or limit caffeine, chocolate, fatty foods, and alcohol.

  • Who should not take Pepcid?

    If you are sensitive to or have ever had an allergic reaction to Pepcid, or similar medications such as cimetidine, ranitidine, or nizatidine, you should not take Pepcid.

    Do not use Pepcid AC products if you have trouble or pain swallowing food, vomiting with blood, or bloody or black stools.

  • What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Pepcid?

    Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Pepcid. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have kidney or liver disease; trouble or pain swallowing food; vomiting with blood, or bloody or black stools; had heartburn for more than 3 months; have heartburn with lightheadedness, sweating, or dizziness; chest pain or shoulder pain with shortness of breath, sweating, pain (to the arms, neck, or shoulders), or lightheadedness; frequent chest pain; frequent wheezing; unexplained weight loss; nausea or vomiting; or stomach pain.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.

    Ulcers
    Adults:
    Your doctor will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on the type of ulcer you have.

    Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
    Adults:
    The usual dose is 20 mg (tablet) or half a teaspoonful (suspension) twice a day for up to 6 weeks.

    Infants (<12 months) and children 1-16 years: Your doctor will prescribe the appropriate dose for your child based on their body weight.

    Prevention and Relief of Heartburn
    Adults and children ≥12 years:
    Pepcid AC: For relief, take one tablet. For prevention, take one tablet 15-60 minutes before eating or drinking anything that causes heartburn. Maximum Strength AC may be taken 10-60 minutes before. Do not take more than two tablets a day.

  • How should I take Pepcid?

    Take Pepcid by mouth, with or without food. It may take several days for Pepcid to begin relieving stomach pain. You can use antacids for the pain at the same time you take Pepcid.

    If you are taking Pepcid suspension, shake it vigorously for 5-10 seconds immediately before use. Any unused oral suspension should be discarded after 30 days.

    Pepcid AC EZ Chews may be chewed, but other Pepcid AC tablets should be swallowed with a glass of water.

  • What should I avoid while taking Pepcid?

    Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to Pepcid. It can potentially cause dizziness.

  • What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Pepcid?

    If Pepcid is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Pepcid with antacids, itraconazole, or ketoconazole.

  • What are the possible side effects of Pepcid?

    Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.

    Side effects may include: headache, diarrhea, dizziness, constipation

  • Can I receive Pepcid if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    The effects of Pepcid during pregnancy are unknown. Tell your doctor immediately if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Pepcid may appear in breast milk and could affect a breastfeeding infant. If Pepcid is essential to your health, your doctor may advise you to discontinue breastfeeding until your treatment with Pepcid is finished.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of Pepcid?

    If you miss a dose of Pepcid, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.

  • How should I store Pepcid?

    Store at room temperature. Pepcid for oral suspension should be protected from freezing.

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