Uses, Dosage, Side Effects, and Warnings


Pantoprazole is the generic name for Protonix, a medicine that helps treat problems with acid reflux and peptic ulcers. It works by lowering the acid in the stomach.

Pantoprazole is a proton pump inhibitor (PPI). People use it to treat and manage the symptoms of erosive esophagitis and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.

Doctors also prescribe pantoprazole to prevent ulcers from forming.

In this article, we take a look at the uses of pantoprazole, possible side effects, and warnings while taking this drug.

Adults and children 5 years of age and older can take pantoprazole to treat erosive esophagitis. Erosive esophagitis is inflammation of the esophagus, which is the tube that connects the mouth and the stomach. Erosive esophagitis occurs when stomach acid rises into the esophagus.

Usually, doctors prescribe pantoprazole sodium tablets for erosive esophagitis for a period of 8 weeks. Sometimes, however, adults need to take it for an additional 8 weeks for further healing.

Doctors should limit the use of pantoprazole in children with erosive esophagitis to a maximum of 8 weeks.

People can also use pantoprazole to treat chronic conditions such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. People with Zollinger-Ellison syndrome can have stomach ulcers, acid reflux, and chronic diarrhea.

Doctors may also prescribe pantoprazole, in addition to antibiotics, to treat Helicobacter pylori infections.

When not indicated, doctors may prescribe pantoprazole to prevent bleeding stomach ulcers and to prevent stomach ulcers from forming after a person takes nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Pantoprazole, like other PPIs, works by blocking pumps in the stomach lining that release acid. These pumps are called hydrogen-potassium pumps.

PPIs can reduce the secretion of acid in the stomach for up to 24 hours. During this time, the stomach will produce more pumps, so people need to take another dose to stop the production of acid in the stomach.

Pantoprazole sodium is available as delayed-release coated tablets in strengths of 20 milligrams (mg) and 40 mg. An oral suspension is available in doses of 40 mg for people who are unable to take tablets.

People need to take the whole delayed-release tablets. They should not split, chew or crush the tablets because pantoprazole is unstable in acidic environments. The coating protects the drug from degradation in the stomach.

People can take the tablets with or without food. For the oral suspension, take it in 1 teaspoon of applesauce or apple juice about 30 minutes before a meal.

Each diagnosis will require a different dose of pantoprazole, so healthcare providers should make an accurate diagnosis before prescribing the drug.

In rare critical circumstances, a doctor may give a person pantoprazole injection for 7-10 days in a hospital setting until the person can take capsules or oral suspensions.

Erosive esophagitis

For erosive esophagitis, doctors may prescribe pantoprazole tablets or oral suspension.

Adults can take 20 mg or 40 mg per day depending on the severity of the disease. Doctors will usually prescribe pantoprazole for 8 weeks.

If the medicine does not work after 8 weeks, in some cases a person may continue to take the lowest effective dose for an additional 8 weeks.

Zollinger-Ellison syndrome

When treating chronic conditions such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, people should take pantoprazole 40 mg twice a day.

Most people tolerate pantoprazole well, but some may experience the following side effects:

  • diarrhea
  • headache
  • respiratory infections
  • abdominal pain

When people use pantoprazole for long periods of time, they are at an increased risk of the following side effects:

  • Clostridium difficile diarrhea
  • colitis
  • overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine
  • bone loss
  • kidney problems

People who take pantoprazole for a long time are at risk of becoming carcinogenic and causing rare types of gastrointestinal tumors.

Based on a recent major change in its prescribing information, people are also at increased risk of stomach growth called fundic gland polyps when taking PPIs for a long time, especially for longer. a year.

Taking pantoprazole for prolonged periods can cause vitamin and mineral deficiencies, such as:

Doctors should follow up with people taking pantoprazole. After treatment is complete, if a person still has symptoms, doctors need to determine if the diagnosis is indeed correct.

Sometimes people can feel much better after treatment is finished, but their symptoms can return quickly. Doctors may do other tests, including an endoscopy.

An endoscopy involves passing a flexible tube with a camera, called an endoscope, through the stomach through your mouth to see the inside of the body.

Renal disorders

Taking pantoprazole can cause kidney disease called acute interstitial nephritis. This can happen in people sensitive to PPIs.

If a doctor detects this condition, he will immediately stop the medication.

Bacterial infections

Several studies have linked the use of pantoprazole to It’s hard diarrhea. This infectious diarrhea can be fatal, especially in older people.

Doctors should prescribe the lowest effective dose for the shortest time possible to prevent this infection.

Bone problems

People who take high doses, several times a day and for long periods of time are also at risk for hip, wrist or spine fractures.

Skin problems

A serious skin condition called cutaneous lupus erythematosus has happened in some people taking pantoprazole.

This condition can develop after a few weeks to a few years of continuous use of this drug. After the person stops taking the medicine, symptoms improve in about 4 to 12 weeks.

When combining pantoprazole with other drugs, a doctor should consider possible interactions. Some drugs need acidic conditions for the intestine to absorb them.

By reducing the acidity of stomach contents, pantoprazole may affect the way the body absorbs the following drugs:

  • the iron
  • ketoconazole
  • some cancer drugs
  • certain immunosuppressive drugs

Pantoprazole may give a false positive urine test for THC.

People taking antiretrovirals such as rilpivirine or nelfinavir should not use pantoprazole or any other PPIs. PPIs can reduce the body’s ability to absorb these antiretrovirals.

Doctors should frequently monitor people taking warfarin and pantoprazole at the same time, as the combination can cause increased bleeding. If both drugs are needed, your doctor may need to adjust the dose of warfarin.

Taking methotrexate and pantoprazole at the same time can lead to increased levels of methotrexate, which can be toxic. Doctors should closely monitor people who take high doses of methotrexate with pantoprazole.

Some studies have shown an interaction between clopidogrel and pantoprazole. However, the effects are not yet clear.

Some people combine over-the-counter antacids with pantoprazole. There is no interaction between these two types of drugs.

Pantoprazole sodium (Protonix) is a Category C pregnancy drug.

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), this means that animal studies suggest the drug could harm the fetus.

However, researchers have not studied how safe the drug is for pregnant women. In some cases, the potential benefits could allow the use of pantoprazole during pregnancy.

Pantoprazole is released into human breast milk, but the effects on the infant are uncertain. If a person is breastfeeding and considering taking pantoprazole, they should speak to their doctor to weigh the risks against the benefits to the nursing child.

According to GoodRx, the lowest cost of 30 generic pantoprazole 20 mg tablets is around $ 9.91. It costs as little as $ 7.07 for the 40 mg tablets.

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A person should see a doctor to find out which PPI will work best for them.

Doctors have used PPIs to over 25 years. These are safe and effective medications that can help people manage a range of acid-related medical conditions.

All PPIs work the same, although there are differences in their properties, how the body breaks them down, and their FDA approved uses.

There is currently no strong evidence to suggest that one PPI is better than another for the management of GERD, peptic ulcers, or recovery from esophagitis.

Other PPIs include:

  • dexlansoprazole (Dexilant)
  • esomeprazole (Nexium)
  • lansoprazole (Prevacid)
  • omeprazole (Prilosec)
  • rabeprazole (Aciphex)

A doctor can advise you on which type is best for a person based on their medical history.

Pantoprazole is an effective medicine for treating erosive esophagitis.

Most people don’t experience any side effects, but they should see their doctor while taking the medication to make sure it is working and the diagnosis is correct.

If symptoms return quickly after treatment is finished, the doctor will need to do some tests to see if the initial diagnosis was correct.

When people use pantoprazole for long periods of time, they can be exposed to vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Doctors need to detect and correct deficiencies as quickly as possible.

Pantoprazole can interfere with some medications, so it is important that a doctor has a complete medication history before prescribing pantoprazole or any other PPIs.

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