Annette (Gbemudu) Ogbru, PharmD, MBA
Dr. Gbemudu received her B.S. in Biochemistry from Nova Southeastern University, her PharmD degree from University of Maryland, and MBA degree from University of Baltimore. She completed a one year post-doctoral fellowship with Rutgers University and Bristol Myers Squibb.
In this Article
- What are antacids, and how do they work?
- For what conditions are antacids used?
- Are there any differences among the different types of antacids?
- What are the warnings and precautions for antacids?
- What are the side effects of antacids?
- With which drugs do antacids interact?
- What antacids are available?
What are the warnings and precautions for antacids?
- Antacids (for example, calcium carbonate) when consumed in high doses and for long
periods of time may cause acid rebound. Acid rebound is a condition in which the
stomach produces even more acid after the consumption of foods and drinks.
Fortunately, the effects of acid rebound are not clinically important.
- High-dose calcium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate when
taken together can cause a condition called milk-alkali syndrome. Its symptoms
include headache, nausea, irritability, and weakness,
hypercalcemia (high blood
calcium levels), and renal impairment.
- Extensive use of aluminum-containing antacids may cause
phosphate levels in the blood), which in severe cases could lead to muscle
weakness, anorexia, and
osteomalacia (softening of the bones due to defective
- Antacids containing aluminum hydroxide should be used with caution in
patients who have recently suffered massive upper GI
- For patients with conditions such as
pressure, chronic heart
failure, renal failure and those who have sodium-restricted diets, it is
important to pay attention to the sodium level in sodium-based antacid
preparations such as sodium bicarbonate
- Antacids should not be given to children under six years of age.
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