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Suffering from heartburn and acid reflux. What are the effects of taking ranitidine?

Hi i suffer quite a lot from heartburn / acid reflux . chewing gum seems to subside the symptoms. I also take ranitidine quite regularly if im going to eat spicy foods or drink alcohol. if i watch what i eat i dont really suffer at all and if i do it is minimal enough for chewing gum to suppress it. My question is are there any adverse effects from regular ranitidine use ?
Asked On : Thu, 13 Dec 2012
Answers:  2 Views:  107
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Dear stevecheyne,
Ranitidine is relatively a safe drug, you can take it once in a while when you actually need it, but making it a habit is not advisable. Certain sideffects of Ranitidine are Headache (in 3% Patients) Dizziness,Agitation, Constipation,Diarrhoea ,Abdominal Pain also occur in few patients.
You can also use Omeprazole 20mg or Pantoprazole 20mg, these are more effective than Ranitidine, but also keep in mind they have more sideeffects.
Hope this helps.
Take care,,stay healthy stay cheerful .
Answered: Thu, 13 Dec 2012
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Emergency Medicine Specialist Dr. Sheeba Stephen's  Response
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic. Thanks for your query.

Ranitidine is a relatively safe medication even for log term use. However, it can have mild interactions when taken with othe medication. Moreover, as you get older and as your kidney functions decrease, there may be more pronounced side effects. In whatever case, when you can avoid medication by following dietary and lifestyle medication, that would be the best and safest approach. I would suggest the following remedial and preventive measures:

1) Avoid foods that cause gastric irritation like spicy foods, coffee, tea, carbonated drinks, etc. Smoking and alcohol are also gastric irritants.
2) Eat at regular intervals and avoid delaying meals.
3) Increase the fibre content in your diet - take more of vegetables and fruits.
4) Avoid eating outside; especially avoid all kinds of junk food and fast foods.
5) Try to have a healthy lifestyle with regular exercise and proper sleep habits.
5) Try to avoid stress and try relaxation methods like deep breathing, meditation, etc.

Best wishes,
Dr. Sheeba Stephen
Answered: Thu, 13 Dec 2012
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