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Product Overview

Famotidine (generic Pepcid)

  • What is famotidine?
    Famotidine (generic Pepcid) is an over-the-counter drug used to treat GERD - gastroesophageal reflux disease. This condition causes painful heartburn and can eventually damage your esophagus. Famotidine can also be prescribed to treat stomach and esophageal ulcers.

    Tired of feeling that burning sensation in your throat every time you eat a meal? Talk to your doctor about whether famotidine is right for your needs.

  • What are common side effects of famotidine?
    While adverse reactions to famotidine are rare, some patients who take the drug may experience mild side effects, including headache, dizziness, constipation, and diarrhea.

    Rare, more serious adverse events have been known to occur. If you are concerned that famotidine is causing you to experience any number of these symptoms, please visit the National Institutes of Health’s DailyMed webpage.

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Medically Reviewed By Dr. Allison Edwards, MD

Frequently asked questions about Famotidine

What is famotidine?

Famotidine is a prescription medication used to treat a range of conditions caused when your body overproduces stomach acid. Generic for the brand name Pepcid, it is often used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition that causes heartburn and esophagus damage. GERD affects more than 3 million Americans each year. It occurs when the acid and bile that your stomach uses to digest food begins to creep up into the esophagus, damaging and irritating its lining.

Famotidine is also prescribed to help heal ulcers and prevent their recurrence. It can even treat Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, a condition in which tumors on the pancreas cause an increase in stomach acid production.

Lower-strength famotidine is available over-the-counter and can be used to treat heartburn and indigestion.

What is famotidine used to treat?

Doctors prescribe famotidine to treat a gastroesophageal condition caused by the overproduction of acid in your stomach. Generally speaking, stomach acid is a good thing; it helps your body break down food into the nutrients you need to thrive. When the stomach begins to produce more acid than it needs for digestion, however, conditions like GERD may occur.

Famotidine is an effective treatment for GERD, a condition in which stomach acid enters the esophagus, irritating its gentle lining, causing uncomfortable side effects like heartburn, and leaving you at a higher risk of developing more serious conditions, like esophageal cancer.

Famotidine can also be used to treat stomach and intestinal ulcers and prevent them from returning. It can treat Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, in which tumors on the pancreas stimulate an overproduction of acid in the stomach.

You can purchase lower-strength Famotidine over the counter at most pharmacies. Nonprescription famotidine helps relieve symptoms like heartburn and indigestion.

How does famotidine work?

Famotidine belongs to a family of drugs known as H2 blockers. These drugs help reduce GERD symptoms and treat ulcers by reducing the amount of acid that the stomach produces. To get into the science of it, certain cells within your stomach are tasked with creating stomach acid, which your body needs to digest food and kill germs. H2 blockers prevent these cells from producing excess acid, helping reduce your GERD symptoms.

What are common side effects of famotidine?

While there are some common side effects associated with famotidine, it is important to remember that your doctor prescribed this drug because its ability to treat your GERD symptoms outweighs any adverse effects it may cause.

You may still, however, experience some side effects after starting famotidine. These may include:

Headache Dizziness Constipation Diarrhea

While these side effects are common, contact your doctor if your symptoms are severe or if they do not go away.

Rare but serious side effects, which occur in fewer than 1% of people taking famotidine, may include:

Fever, asthenia, fatigue Palpitations Elevated liver enzymes, vomiting, nausea, abdominal discomfort, anorexia, dry mouth Thrombocytopenia Orbital edema, rash, conjunctival injection, bronchospasm Musculoskeletal pain, arthralgia Seizure, hallucinations, depression, anxiety, decreased libido, insomnia, somnolence Pruritus, dry skin, flushing Tinnitus, taste disorder Impotence

If you are experiencing these symptoms, contact your doctor.

This is not a complete list of side effects. To learn more about side effects associated with famotidine, visit the National Institutes of Health’s DailyMed page for famotidine.

What is a typical starting dose of famotidine?

For adult patients suffering from GERD, a typical starting dose of famotidine is 20 mg twice daily. The same dosage generally applies to patients taking famotidine for an active intestinal ulcer. Gastric ulcer patients are usually prescribed a once-daily dose of 40 mg.

Can I get famotidine over-the-counter?

Famotidine is currently only available via prescription. This means the use of this drug must be authorized by a licensed health care provider.

Providers on Sesame can write a prescription – or refill an existing one – during a virtual or in-person visit. Depending on the medication, you can arrange for same-day pickup at a pharmacy near you or order the medication to be delivered to your door for just $5. Book an online consultation with a real, licensed provider on Sesame today to determine whether or not famotidine is right for you.

Note that all prescriptions are at the discretion of your health care provider. Providers on Sesame cannot prescribe controlled substances.

Can I get famotidine online?

Yes! Sesame offers a fully integrated prescription service, which means you can get the medication you need delivered right to your door, starting at just $5 a month.

Talk to a provider on Sesame and get your online doctor prescription or refill ordered right away for fast and convenient pickup from a pharmacy of your choice.

Note that all prescriptions are at the discretion of your clinician.

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