Protonix, also known as Pantoprazole, is a prescription drug that typically treats acid reflux disease, heartburn, and consistent cough. It is also prescribed to patients that have gastroesophageal reflux disease or erosive esophagitis. The Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, in which the stomach produces an excess amount of acid, can be treated by this medication. This drug is a proton pump inhibitor, meaning that it controls digestive acid flow, which allows the esophagus to heal. It prevents further damage to the organs as well.
How is Protonix used?
Delayed release tablets and granules are the most common way to take this prescription. Many people are able to take tablets orally with water, and for those who cannot, granules can be mixed with applesauce or apple juice and consumed orally. This medication should be taken approximately thirty minutes before eating, and it can be taken with or without food. In rare instances, feeding tubes have been used to administer this drug.
Are there side effects from use of Protonix?
The most common side effects that many patients experience include headache, dizziness, gas, vomiting, and nausea. Most of the time, these are not severe and do not last very long. Individuals taking Protonix should call their doctors if these symptoms are persistent. Other side effects may be joint pain, stomach pain, and diarrhea.
Some side effects may be serious and affect one’s everyday activities. Several include blistering or peeling of the skin, difficulty breathing and swallowing, or swelling of the facial features. Although these are rare, patients may also experience hives, rash, or hoarseness of the voice and throat.
Taking Protonix during Pregnancy
Protonix is a Category B drug. It does not cause harm to an unborn baby. However, most doctors assume it to be unsafe while breastfeeding because it can pass through breastmilk to the newborn.
People who take Protonix for an extended period of time may experience a breakdown in the lining of the stomach. Sometimes, low levels of vitamin B12 are detected in the blood and patients need to take a supplement. Higher instances of fractured bones have been recorded in patients taking this medication.
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