Nexium is the brand of esomeprazole, a drug used to treat certain problems with the stomach and esophagus.
Nexium is approved for the treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and in combination with antibiotics for the treatment of patients with H. pylori infection.
It is also used to reduce the risk of stomach ulcers and the treatment of Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.
It also helps to treat acid damage to the stomach and esophagus, prevents the appearance of ulcers and can help prevent esophageal cancer.
Nexium refers to a class of drugs that block the production of acid in the stomach.
Other similar drugs are: omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), rabeprazole (Aciphex) and pantoprazole (Protonix).
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved esomeprazole in 2001. Pfizer bought the rights to the OTC version of Nexium from AstraZeneca in 2012.
In 2014, AstraZeneca reduced thousands of jobs due to a decrease in income due to expiration of rights onNexium.
People with a history of liver disease or Asian descent should inform their doctor, because side effects may be worse in these people.
You should also tell your doctor if you have one of the following:
- Problems with swallowing
- Bloody stools or vomiting
- Heartburn lasts more than three months
- Thoracic pain
- Unexplained weight loss
In a 2010 study, a 25 percent chance of a spinal or wrist fracture in postmenopausal women who were taking Nexium was discovered.
- Abnormal heartbeat
- Pain in the muscles
- Leg cramps
High doses and prolonged use may increase the risk of fractures associated with osteoporosis, hip, wrist and spine.
Serious side effects of Nexium (Esomeprazole)
Immediately stop using Nexium and call your health care provider if you experience the following problems:
- Uneven heart rate
- Twitching of muscles
- Muscle weakness and lameness
- Severe allergic reaction (swelling of the face, lips, throat, shortness of breath)
- Hoarseness or swallowing problems
Tell your doctor about any allergies that you have, and about all the medicines that you take, as they can affect the work of Nexium and vice versa.
Nexium may increase the concentration of diazepam (Valium) in the blood, and they should not be mixed.
Because Nexium reduces gastric acid, it can reduce the absorption of antifungal agents, such as ketoconazole (Nizoral), and increase the absorption of digoxin (lanoxin), causing possible toxicity.
In addition, Nexium can increase the level of saquinavir in the blood (Fortovase, Invirase) and reduce the levels of nelfinavir (Viracept) and atazanavir (Reyataz), so avoid using these drugs together.
Nexium should be avoided with the following drugs.
- Blood Solvents
- Some antifungal agents
- Cilostazol (Pletal)
- Iron supplements
- Some HIV medicines
Over-the-counter (OTC) version of Nexium is available in 20-milligram capsules.
People should not use this medication for more than 14 consecutive days unless the doctor has indicated this.
Nexial violet capsules with thin yellow strips should be taken one hour before meals, swallowed whole, and not chewed or crushed.
The average dosage of the prescribed dose is as follows, although your doctor may prescribe different doses to you:
- For adults: 20 to 40 mg, once a day for four to eight weeks
- For children (1 to 11 years): 10 to 20 mg per day
- For the treatment of H. pylori: 40 mg, once a day with amoxicillin (Amoxicot, Amoxil, Biomox) and clarithromycin (Biaxin) for 10 days.
- Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome: 40 mg, twice daily
If you take too much medicine, contact a toxicology center or an emergency.
Typical signs of an overdose include:
- Blurred vision
- Rapid heartbeat
- Excessive drowsiness
- Dry mouth
The missed dose of Nexium
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible, but do not “double” to make up the missed dose.