|20 mg||28 tablets||£22.49|
Esomeprazole is a medication used to treat acid reflux, heartburn and gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD). It's a type of medicine known as a proton pump inhibitor.
Esomeprazole works by decreasing the amount of acid in your stomach to relieve symptoms like heartburn, a persistent cough and having difficulty swallowing. Esomeprazole blocks the enzymes which line the stomach wall that normally produce acid, reducing acid reflux and allowing the stomach to heal.
Esomeprazole will start to have an effect after 2-3 days of taking it. It can take up to 4 weeks for the medicine to work fully so it's possible to experience reduced symptoms until then.
Taking Esomeprazole long term can increase your risk of experiencing side effects. After three months this can include:
You should see your doctor on a regular basis if you have taken Esomeprazole for longer than a year.
A study in Hong Kong attempted to find a link between proton pump inhibitors and stomach cancer but the results only indicated an association. Advice from the NHS states that the risk is very small and that the conclusions drawn from the study didn't prove that these medications cause the risk.
Heartburn is a symptom of acid reflux, causing an unpleasant burning sensation in the middle of the chest. It's fairly common and is usually caused by consuming certain types of food and drink, pregnancy, smoking and stress. Other symptoms of acid reflux include:
The active ingredient in Esomeprazole is esomeprazole magnesium dihydrate.
The inactive ingredients in the medicine are Methacrylic acid-ethyl acrylate copolymer (1:1), talc, triethyl citrate, hypromellose, sugar spheres, magnesium stearate, hydroxypropyl cellulose, glycerol monostearate 40-55, polysorbate 80, microcrystalline cellulose, povidone, macrogol 6000, crospovidone, sodium stearyl fumarate.
The dose prescribed will depend on what you are being treated for.
Always take Esomeprazole as your doctor or pharmacist has prescribed. The instructions may vary depending on why you are taking it and the severity of your symptoms. The medication is usually taken once a day with or without food. They should be taken with a glass water and can be dissolved in water if you are unable to swallow tablets.
You can dissolve Esomeprazole tablets in water if you have difficulty swallowing pills. Ensure you don't snap them in half or crush them as that will compromise the tablet coating. Instead, place the tablet in half a glass of water and stir it gently until it dissolves, drinking it straight away.
How long you should take Esomeprazole will depend on why you are taking it. For minor instances of heartburn and acid reflux it's likely you'll take Esomeprazole for 1-2 weeks. To treat stomach ulcers you may need to take it for up to 8 weeks. After the initial symptoms or infection has been treated, you can then use Esomeprazole as needed when heartburn and acid reflux symptoms occur.
If you forget to take your scheduled dose of Esomeprazole, take it as soon as you can. If you normally take it once a day and it's less than 12 hours until your next dose is due then skip the missed one. If you are on a twice daily dose then skip the missed one if it is less than four hours until you are due to take the next one.
Taking an extra dose of Esomeprazole by accident is unlikely to cause any issues. If you experience any of the following symptoms however then report this to your doctor:
Food and drink will not interfere with Esomeprazole but it's recommended to avoid foods which are known to trigger acid reflux. These include spicy and fatty foods, chocolate, coffee, tea, alcohol and fizzy drinks.
In most cases you can stop taking Esomeprazole after your treatment period without any adverse effects. If you have been taking the medication for a long period of time, consult your doctor first. They may instruct you to gradually reduce the dose to prevent your stomach from producing excess acid.
Common side effects include:
Less common side effects may include:
Rare side effects can include:
The following side effects are signs of an allergic reaction which requires immediate medical assistance:
Esomeprazole should not be taken if:
Consult a doctor before using Esomeprazole if:
If you experience any of the following symptoms while you are taking Esomeprazole report this to a doctor right away:
This could indicate other conditions or illnesses which are being masked by Esomeprazole.
Ensure you are drinking plenty of water while taking Esomeprazole to avoid Headaches and dehydration from diarrhoea. Painkillers are suitable to take alongside Esomeprazole if needed. If you experience nausea or vomiting, take it after food and avoid eating anything spicy or rich. Introducing high fibre foods into your diet can help to relieve constipation and avoiding lentils, beans, onions and overeating should ease stomach pain and wind.
Always let you doctor or pharmacist know about any additional medications you are taking, or planning to take. This includes herbal remedies and over the counter treatments.
Esomeprazole is not suitable for individuals taking medicine which contains Nelfinavir to treat HIV.
If you are taking any of the following medications inform your doctor before taking Esomeprazole:
Alternatives to Esomeprazole include Lansoprazole, Omeprazole, Pantoprazole and Rabeprazole. These are all proton pump inhibitors and work in the same way as Esomeprazole.
You can take Antacids such as Gaviscon alongside Esomeprazole. Ensure you leave at least two hours between each medicine.
It is safe to take painkillers at the same time as Esomeprazole. If you plan to take ibuprofen, it's recommended to do so either with or after food to avoid a stomach upset.
There are some lifestyle changes you can make to reduce acid reflux and heartburn. These include:
Avoid consuming foods which will trigger heartburn or eating too close to bedtime. Cut down on alcohol and stop smoking and try not to wear tight clothing which cling to the waist.
There is not always a definite reason why you are experiencing heartburn and acid reflux but common causes include:
Foods which are known to trigger acid reflux and cause heartburn include:
There are several things you can do to reduce acid reflux and prevent symptoms from being triggered. Wait at least 2-3 hours after eating before you go to bed, eating five small meals instead of three large ones per day and chew slowly. Avoiding heartburn triggers and taking medication like Esomeprazole also help.
Esomeprazole stops acid reflux by blocking the production of acid in the stomach to allow it to return to normal. Aside from this, taking care not to overeat, avoiding spicy, fatty foods and not eating before bed can help to stop acid reflux from being triggered. Reducing caffeine and alcohol consumption is also recommended.
Stress is a common trigger for symptoms of acid reflux. There are several theories as to why this is. For example when stress hormones increase, this has an impact on lipids called prostaglandins which regulate the body's response to inflammation and injury. When this decreases, it leaves the stomach more sensitive to the effects of acid, increasing the likelihood of symptoms like heartburn. Stress can also cause changes in the body which can lead to acid reflux.
Drinking alcohol will not interfere with Esomeprazole however it is not recommended to drink during treatment as it can trigger acid reflux and further irritate the lining of your stomach.
A brand of Esomeprazole called Nexium is available over-the-counter as a 20mg dose. Check the above guidance to ensure the medication is suitable for you, or consult a pharmacist if you are unsure.
Esomeprazole does not have an affect on fertility in either men or women.
Esomeprazole does not have an impact on the effectiveness of the Contraceptive pill, however it may interfere with the ellaOne emergency contraceptive pill.
It's unlikely that Esomeprazole will affect your ability to drive. However, if you experience dizziness or blurred vision then do not drive or operate heavy machinery.
If you are pregnant, or trying for a baby, then consult your doctor before taking Esomeprazole to make sure it is safe for you. Do not take Esomeprazole while breastfeeding as it is not known if the medication passes into breast milk or not.
NHS> Esomeprazole https://www.nhs.uk/medicines/esomeprazole/
NHS> Acid Reflux drugs linked to increased stomach cancer risk https://www.nhs.uk/news/cancer/acid-reflux-drugs-linked-increased-stomach-cancer-risk/
NHS> Heartburn and acid reflux https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/heartburn-and-acid-reflux/
Web MD> What lifestyle changes help manage heartburn? https://www.webmd.com/heartburn-gerd/guide/lifestyle-changes-heartburn
Health Line> Can stress cause acid reflux? https://www.healthline.com/health/gerd/stress#1
Patient Information leaflet https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/2968/pil
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