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Product Overview

Pantoprazole (generic Protonix)

  • What is pantoprazole?
    Pantoprazole (generic Protonix) is a prescription drug used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which can cause painful heartburn and, over time, even damage to the esophagus. Pantoprazole may even help reduce your risk of developing esophageal cancer.

    Tired of suffering through acid reflux every time you eat a meal? Talk to your doctor about whether pantoprazole is right for you.

  • What are common side effects of pantoprazole?
    While adverse reactions to pantoprazole are uncommon, some patients who take the drug may experience mild side effects, including headache, diarrhea, nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, flatulence, dizziness, and joint pain.

    Rare, more serious adverse events have been known to occur. Additionally, long-term use of this medicine may have negative effects. If you are concerned that pantoprazole is causing you to experience any number of these side effects or want to learn more about the long-term consequences of this medicine, please contact your doctor.

    This is not a complete list of side effects. For more information on adverse effects you may experience while taking pantoprazole, 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 pantoprazole

What is pantoprazole?

Pantoprazole is a prescription medication used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition that causes heartburn and esophagus damage. It can be used to alleviate symptoms of GERD, heal acid damage to the stomach and esophagus, and help prevent stomach ulcers. Pantoprazole may even be able to help reduce your risk of developing esophageal cancer.

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 your esophageal lining and causing uncomfortable side effects like heartburn.

What is pantoprazole used to treat?

Pantoprazole is most often prescribed to treat symptoms associated with GERD. GERD causes stomach acid and bile - integral to digesting food - to enter the esophagus and throat, irritating the lining and causing uncomfortable side effects. Pantoprazole is effective in treating Erosive Esophagitis, an inflammation caused by GERD that damages the esophagus.

Pantoprazole can be prescribed to alleviate other conditions resulting from the stomach’s overproduction of acid. This includes Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, in which tumors on the pancreas stimulate an overproduction of acid in the stomach.

How does pantoprazole work?

Pantoprazole belongs to a class of drugs known as proton pump inhibitors. These drugs cause a significant, long-term reduction in stomach acid production. Pantoprazole works by blocking a complex process called hydrogen potassium ATPase. Put simply, this is the process that acidifies the stomach and produces the chemicals it needs to break down food. Pantoprazole limits this process, placing a limit on the amount of acid the stomach produces and reducing the likelihood that acid will enter the esophagus and cause damage and discomfort.

What are common side effects of pantoprazole?

While there are some common side effects associated with pantoprazole, 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.

Some common side effects of pantoprazole, however, may include:

Headache Diarrhea Nausea Abdominal pain Vomiting Flatulence Dizziness Arthralgia (joint pain)

Rare but more serious side effects of pantoprazole may include:

Blistering or peeling skin Rash hives; itching; swelling of the eyes, face, lips, mouth, throat, or tongue; difficulty breathing or swallowing; or hoarseness Irregular, fast, or pounding heartbeat muscle spasms; uncontrollable shaking of a part of the body; excessive tiredness; lightheadedness; or seizures Severe diarrhea with watery stools, stomach pain, or fever that does not go away Rash on cheeks or arms that is sensitive to sunlight Increased or decreased urination, blood in urine, fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, fever, rash, or joint pain

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact your doctor right away.

This is not a complete list of side effects associated with pantoprazole. For more information on pantoprazole side effects, please visit the National Institutes of Health’s DailyMed page.

How long does it take for pantoprazole to work?

You may start to feel better within 2-3 days of beginning pantoprazole. Limiting your body’s production of stomach acid is a complex process, though, and it may take up to 4 weeks for pantoprazole to take full effect.

What is a typical starting dose of pantoprazole?

To treat erosive esophagitis associated with GERD, your doctor will likely prescribe 40 mg of pantoprazole to be taken daily for up to 8 weeks. If you have not achieved your desired reduction in stomach acid and GERD symptoms after an 8-week course of pantoprazole, your doctor may recommend another 8-week course.

If you are suffering from Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, your doctor may prescribe a twice daily dose of 40 mg of pantoprazole for up to 8-weeks.

Unlike some other medications, pantoprazole doses do not generally fluctuate in accordance with the severity of your symptoms or status of your condition. Consult your doctor before stopping pantoprazole.

To learn more about dosage and administrative guidelines, visit the National Institutes of Health’s DailyMed page for pantoprazole.

Can I get pantoprazole over-the-counter?

Pantoprazole 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 pantoprazole 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 pantoprazole 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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