How can I treat acid reflux with Lansoprazole?

Why is this prescription given?

Lansoprazole is used to treat the symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition in which the backward flow of stomach acid causes heartburn and possible damage to the oesophagus (the tube between the throat and stomach) in adults and children older than 1 year. Lansoprazole is used to treat the damage caused by GERD in adults and children older than 1 year. In adults with GERD, lansoprazole is prescribed to promote esophageal healing and prevent further esophageal damage. Lansoprazole is also used to treat ulcers (sores in the lining of the stomach or intestines), to prevent more ulcers from developing in adults whose ulcers have already healed, and to reduce the risk of ulcer development in adults taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Lansoprazole is also used to treat conditions in which the stomach produces too much acid, such as the adult form of Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Lansoprazole is also used in conjunction with other drugs to treat and prevent stomach ulcers in adults caused by a specific type of bacteria (H. pylori). Lansoprazole sold without a prescription is used to treat adults with frequent heartburn (heartburn that occurs two or more times per week). Lansoprazole belongs to the class of drugs known as proton pump inhibitors. It functions by decreasing the amount of stomach acid produced.

How should this drug be administered?

Oral lansoprazole is available as a delayed-release (releases the medication in the intestine to prevent its breakdown by stomach acids) capsule and an orally disintegrating (dissolving) delayed-release tablet. Lansoprazole is available over-the-counter as a delayed-release capsule for oral administration. Lansoprazole is typically taken once daily, prior to a meal. Prescription lansoprazole is taken twice a day (every 12 hours) or three times a day (every 8 hours) before a meal for 10 to 14 days when combined with other anti-H. pylori drugs. Lansoprazole is typically taken once a day, in the morning prior to a meal, for 14 days. Additional 14-day treatments may be repeated if necessary, but no more frequently than once every four months. Take lansoprazole at approximately the same time(s) daily. Follow the directions on the prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to clarify anything you do not comprehend. Administer lansoprazole exactly as prescribed. Do not take more or less of it, or take it more frequently or for a longer period of time, than prescribed by your physician or indicated on the label. Inform your doctor if you have taken lansoprazole for a longer duration than indicated on the package.

Do not split, chew, or crush the capsules; they should be swallowed whole. If you have trouble swallowing capsules, you may open the capsule, sprinkle the granules on 1 tablespoon of applesauce, Ensure® pudding, cottage cheese, yoghurt, or peeled pears, and swallow the mixture without chewing. Additionally, you can open a capsule, pour the contents into 2 ounces (60 millilitres) of orange juice, apple juice, or tomato juice, mix briefly, and swallow immediately. Immediately after swallowing the mixture, rinse the glass with additional juice and drink. Then, rinse the glass with juice at least twice more and consume the juice to ensure that all of the medication has been removed.

Take the capsules without a prescription with a full glass of water. Avoid slicing, chewing, and crushing them.

Do not cut, chew, or break the orally disintegrating tablets. Place a tablet on the tongue and allow it to dissolve for up to one minute. After the tablet has dissolved, it should be consumed with or without water. If you are unable to swallow the tablet, place it in an oral syringe, draw up 4 mL of water for a 15 mg tablet or 10 mL of water for a 30-mg tablet, gently shake the syringe to dissolve the tablet, and immediately squirt the solution into your mouth. Then, draw 2 mL of additional water into the syringe, gently shake, and squirt the water into your mouth. Do not consume the mixture more than 15 minutes after the tablet has been dissolved.

Both the contents of capsules and orally disintegrating tablets can be administered via feeding tube. If you have a feeding tube, consult your physician about how to take your medication. Follow these instructions precisely.

Do not take lansoprazole without a prescription for immediate relief of heartburn symptoms. One to four days may pass before you feel the full effects of the medication. Call your doctor if your symptoms worsen or do not improve within 14 days, or if they return within four months of treatment completion. Do not take nonprescription lansoprazole for longer than 14 days or more frequently than once every four months without first consulting your doctor.

Continue taking lansoprazole regardless of how well you feel. Do not stop taking lansoprazole without first consulting your doctor. Call your doctor if your condition does not improve or worsens.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for a copy of the patient information provided by the manufacturer.

Other applications for this drug

This medication may be prescribed for additional uses; consult your doctor or pharmacist for details.

What special precautions am I required to take?

Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to lansoprazole, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in lansoprazole capsules or orally disintegrating tablets prior to taking this medication. Ask your physician or pharmacist for a list of the medication’s ingredients.
Inform your physician if you’re taking rilpivirine (Edurant, in Cabenuva, Complera, Juluca, Odefsey). Your physician will likely advise you not to take lansoprazole if you are currently taking this medication.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist of all prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and dietary supplements you are currently taking or plan to take. Include at least one of the following: anticoagulants such as warfarin (Jantoven), atazanavir (Reyataz, in Evotaz), dasatinib (Sprycel), digoxin (Lanoxin), diuretics (‘water pills’), erlotinib (Tarceva), iron supplements, itraconazole (Sporanox, Tolsura), ketoconazole, methotrexate (Trexall, Xatmep) (Vfend). Your doctor may need to adjust your medication dosages or closely monitor you for adverse effects.
Inform your physician of any herbal supplements you’re taking, especially St. John’s wort. Your physician may advise you to avoid taking St. John’s wort while taking lansoprazole.
Sucralfate (Carafate) should be administered at least 30 minutes after lansoprazole.
Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had a low level of magnesium, calcium, potassium, or sodium in your blood; hypoparathyroidism (condition in which the body does not produce enough parathyroid hormone [PTH]; low levels of vitamin B12 in your body; osteoporosis (a condition in which the bones become thin and weak and break easily); or an autoimmune disease (condition in which the body attacks its own healthy tissues).
If your heartburn has lasted three months or longer, or if you have experienced any of the following symptoms, you should consult your doctor before taking lansoprazole without a prescription: lightheadedness, sweating, or dizziness along with your heartburn; chest pain or shoulder pain; shortness of breath or wheezing; pain that spreads to your arms, neck, or shoulders; unexplained weight loss; nausea; vomiting, especially if the vomit is bloody; stomach pain You might have a condition that cannot be treated with an over-the-counter medication.
tell your doctor if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to become pregnant. Call your doctor if you become pregnant while taking lansoprazole.
If you are 70 or older, do not take this medication for longer than recommended on the product label or by your physician.
If you have phenylketonuria (an inherited condition that requires a special diet to prevent brain damage that can lead to severe intellectual disability), you should be aware that the orally disintegrating tablets may contain aspartame, which forms phenylalanine.


What dietary restrictions should I observe?

Unless your physician instructs you otherwise, maintain your normal diet.

What should I do if I forget to take my medication?

Take the missed dose as soon as you realise it has been omitted. However, if it is nearly time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your regular dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to compensate for a missed one.

What potential side effects does this medication have?

Lansoprazole may cause side effects. Notify your doctor if any of the following symptoms are severe or persistent:
constipation

  • nausea
  • headache
  • dizziness
  • diarrhoea
Some adverse effects can be severe. Call your doctor immediately if any of the following symptoms occur:

rash; hives; itching; swollen eyes, face, lips, mouth, throat, or tongue; difficulty breathing or swallowing; hoarseness blistering, peeling, or bleeding skin; sores on the lips, nose, mouth, or genitals; swollen glands; shortness of breath; fever; Increased or decreased urination, blood in urine, fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, fever, rash, or joint pain are flu-like symptoms.
irregular, rapid, or pounding heartbeat; muscle spasms; involuntary trembling of a body part; excessive fatigue; lightheadedness; dizziness; or seizures.
Severe diarrhoea with watery stools, stomach pain, or persistent fever; joint pain that is new or worsening; rash on the cheeks or arms that is photosensitive
Lansoprazole may have additional adverse effects. Call your doctor if you experience any unusual side effects while taking the medication.

People who take proton pump inhibitors such as lansoprazole may be more likely to fracture their wrists, hips, or spine compared to those who do not take these medications. Those who take proton pump inhibitors may also develop polyps of the fundic gland (a type of growth on the stomach lining). These risks are greatest for those who take these medications in high doses or for one year or longer. Consult your physician about the potential side effects of lansoprazole.

You or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting programme online (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone if you experience a serious side effect (1-800-332-1088).

What should I know about medication storage and disposal?

Keep this medication in its original container, tightly sealed, out of the reach of children. Keep it at room temperature and out of the reach of excessive heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).

It is essential to keep all medications out of the sight and reach of children, as many containers (such as weekly pill organisers and containers for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and can be easily opened by young children. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock the safety cap and place the medication in a secure location that is out of their reach and out of sight. http://www.upandaway.org

To prevent pets, children, and other individuals from ingesting unused medications, special disposal procedures must be followed. However, this medication should not be flushed down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of medication is through a programme that collects unused drugs. Consult your pharmacist or local garbage/recycling department for information on take-back programmes in your area. If you do not have access to a take-back programme, visit the website for Safe Disposal of Medicines (http://goo.gl/c4Rm4p) for more information

Sources

NHS England [reviewed 02/08/2022]

Medline Plus  [reviewed 02/08/2022]

Webmed  [reviewed 02/08/2022]

Reviewed by Yousef Yaghoubi (MPharm) on 03/08/2022.

Yousef is a community pharmacist with an extensive experience in minor ailment treatments. He is a graduate of University College London.

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