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Famotidine Recall | Long-Term Side Effects Info & More

Famotidine, the active ingredient in Pepcid AC, is a popular antacid drug used to treat stomach and intestinal ulcers. In January 2020, a number of similar antacids including Zantac (ranitidine) and Axid (nizatidine) were recalled after they were found to be contaminated with the cancer-causing impurity NDMA. Famotidine did not test positive for NDMA contamination and was not removed from the market.
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Is Famotidine the Same as Zantac?

Famotidine (Pepcid) and ranitidine hydrochloride (Zantac) are H2-blockers used to treat and prevent the recurrence of the stomach and duodenal ulcers. These drugs work by binding to histamine type 2 receptors on the basolateral (antiluminal) surface of gastric parietal cells, interfering with pathways of gastric acid production and secretion.

Related Article: Zantac Lawsuit

What’s the Difference Between a Proton Pump Inhibitor and an H2 Blocker?

H2 blockers work by blocking the histamine receptors in parietal cells to decrease the amount of acid produced. Proton pump inhibitors work by shutting down the proton pumps in these cells and preventing the acid from being secreted into the stomach.

Related Article: Proton Pump Inhibitor Lawsuit

What Are the Warnings for Famotidine?

Famotidine may cause the following symptoms in certain patients: confusion, delirium, hallucinations, disorientation, agitation, seizures, or unusual drowsiness, dullness, tiredness, weakness, or feeling of sluggishness. These are more likely in patients who are older and those with kidney disease.

Is Famotidine Cancerous?

After discovering the cancer-causing impurity in Zantac, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requested other H2 blockers be tested for the carcinogen. They found famotidine had no NDMA in it. Because it is free of NDMA, there is no concern of a potential link between Famotidine and cancer.

What Are the Long-Term Side Effects of Famotidine?

  • Anxiety
  • bleeding gums
  • blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  • blood in the urine or stools
  • bloody, black, or tarry stools
  • cough
  • difficulty breathing
  • discouragement
  • fast, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
  • feeling sad or empty
  • irritability
  • lack of appetite

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Is It OK to Take Famotidine Every Day?

Do not take more than two tablets, capsules, or chewable tablets of famotidine per day, and do not take over-the-counter famotidine for longer than 2 weeks unless your doctor advises you otherwise.

How Do I Stop Taking Famotidine?

To taper off famotidine after regular use, doctors recommend taking a proton pump inhibitor every other day, and an OTC antacid such as Tums or another H2 blocker on alternating days, until you can stop taking the medicine altogether.

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Again, if you were injured by a proton pump inhibitor, you should contact our law firm immediately for a free case evaluation. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a lawsuit and a lawyer can help.

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