Esomeprazole (By mouth)


Esomeprazole (es-oh-MEP-ra-zole)
Treats gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and conditions that cause your stomach to make too much acid (such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome). Also used with antibiotics to treat certain types of ulcers. Prevents stomach ulcers and stomach irritation in patients taking pain and arthritis drugs, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, for long periods of time. This medicine is a proton pump inhibitor.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.


When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to esomeprazole or similar medicines such as omeprazole (Prilosec®), lansoprazole (Prevacid®), pantoprazole (Protonix®), or rabeprazole (Aciphex®). Do not use this medicine in children younger than 1 year of age.

How to Use This Medicine

Delayed Release Capsule, Packet
  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • It is best to take this medicine at least 1 hour before a meal and for the full time of treatment, even if you begin to feel better after a few days.
  • If you are taking this medicine with antibiotics (such as amoxicillin or clarithromycin) to treat an ulcer, take it together with the antibiotics at the same time of day.
  • To use the capsule:
    • Swallow the capsule whole. Do not break, crush, or chew it.
    • If you cannot swallow the capsule you may open it and pour the medicine into a small amount of applesauce. Do not use any other foods.
    • Stir this mixture well and swallow it without chewing. Do not store any of the mixture for future use.
  • To use the capsule with a nasogastric (NG) tube:
    • Open the capsule and place the contents into a 60 mL catheter tipped syringe. Mix it with 50 mL of water. Do not use any other liquids.
    • Place the syringe plunger into the tube and shake the medicine mixture for 15 seconds. Make sure there are no medicine granules stuck in the tip of the syringe.
    • Insert the syringe into the nasogastric tube and give the medicine from the tube into the stomach.
    • Flush the tube with more water to rinse all of the medicine from the tube into the stomach.
  • To use the packet of oral granules:
    • Add the contents into a container with 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of water and stir well. This mixture is a delayed-release oral suspension.
    • Leave the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes to thicken.
    • Stir and drink it within 30 minutes.
  • To use the delayed-release oral suspension with a nasogastric (NG) tube or gastric tube:
    • Add 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of water into a catheter tipped syringe and add the contents of the packet.
    • Shake the syringe right away and leave the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes to thicken.
    • Shake the syringe and give the medicine from the tube into the stomach within 30 minutes.
    • Refill the syringe with 15 mL of water and shake it gently. Flush the tube with the water to rinse all of the medicine from the tube into the stomach.
If a dose is missed:
  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using medicines to treat HIV infection (atazanavir, nelfinavir, saquinavir, Fortovase®, Invirase®, Reyataz®, or Viracept®), cilostazol (Pletal®), diazepam (Valium®), digoxin (Lanoxin®), ketoconazole (Nizoral®), iron supplements, voriconazole (Vfend®), or a blood thinner (such as warfarin, Coumadin®).
  • If you are using this medicine with clarithromycin, do not use this medicine with astemizole (Hismanal®), cisapride (Propulsid®), dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45®, Migranal®), ergotamine (Ergomar®, Ergostat®), pimozide (Orap®), or terfenadine (Seldane®).

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have liver disease or bone problems (such as osteoporosis).
  • This medicine is sometimes given together with clarithromycin (Biaxin®) to treat ulcers. Be sure you understand about the risks and proper use of any other medicines your doctor prescribes together with esomeprazole.
  • This medicine may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if you have a rash; itching; hoarseness; trouble breathing; trouble swallowing; or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth while you are using this medicine.
  • This medicine may increase your risk of having fractures of the hip, wrist, and spine. This is more likely if you are 50 years of age and older, if you receive high doses of this medicine, or use it for one year or more.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
  • Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Blistering, peeling, or red skin rash.
  • Bloody or black, tarry stools.
  • Chest pain, fast heartbeat, sweating, or warmth or redness in your face or upper chest.
  • Confusion or depressed mood.
  • Increase in how much or how often you urinate.
  • Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, weakness, or pale skin.
  • Vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
  • Changes in your menstrual periods.
  • Dry mouth, increased or decreased appetite.
  • Headache, ear pain, or ringing in your ears.
  • Joint pain.
  • Nausea, diarrhea, gas, stomach pain, or constipation.
  • Sleepiness or unusual drowsiness.
  • Trouble sleeping.
  • Weight gain or loss.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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