Omeprazole belongs to the group of medicines that decrease acid production in the stomach.
Uses of Omeprazole
- Stomach ulcer
- Ulcer in the first part of the intestine
- Treating symptoms like heartburn, acid regurgitation associated to gastro-oesophageal reflux disease
- It is also used to prevent upper gastric bleeding
- A peculiar infection of the stomach called Helicobacter Pylori infection. Here it is used along with antibiotics
- Excess acid production in the stomach caused by a growth in the pancreas (Zollinger-Ellison syndrome)
Contraindications of Omeprazole
When should one not use Omeprazole
- If you have an allergic reaction to Omeprazole or other proton pump inhibitors
- Chronic heart failure
- Reduced calcium and magnesium levels
- Liver diseases
- If you are anti-HIV medications like Nelfinavir
- If you have or are suspected of having stomach cancer
Side effects of Omeprazole
Common side effects of this drug are:
- Diarrhea, stomach pain
- Nausea, vomiting
- Itching and rashes due to allergy
- Breathing difficulty
- Irregular heartbeat
- Increased risk of infections on long term use
- Sleep disturbance
- Taste changes
- Low levels of sodium in the blood (rare)
- Joint pains (arthralgia) or muscle pains (myalgia)
- Hair loss (alopecia) (rare)
Precautions and Warnings of Omeprazole
Can I take Omeprazole during pregnancy?
There is no adequate information from the use of Omeprazole in pregnant women. If you are pregnant, you should use this medicine only if your doctor considers the benefit for you more significant than the potential risk for your unborn baby.
Can I take Omeprazole while breastfeeding?
Omeprazole passes into breast milk. However, when taken at normal doses, it is not likely to have any harmful effects on a nursing infant. It can be used by women who are breastfeeding after consulting your doctor.
Can I drive if I have consumed Omeprazole?
Omeprazole is not likely to affect your ability to drive. However, side effects, such as dizziness and visual disturbances, may occur. If affected, avoid driving.
Can I consume alcohol with Omeprazole?
No interaction between alcohol and Omeprazole has been reported. However, alcohol is known to increase acidity and can make your acidity worse.
Other General Warnings
Talk to your doctor if
- If you have liver issues
- You begin to vomit food or blood while taking this medicine or you pass black stools (blood-stained faeces)
- Severe diarrhea warning: it may increase your risk of severe diarrhea. If you are experiencing severe or persistent diarrhea, immediately stop taking medicine and see your doctor
- Bone fractures warning: people who take several doses of a proton pump inhibitors, such as Omeprazole every day for a year or longer may have an increased risk of bone fractures
- If you develop a rash on your skin, especially in areas exposed to the sun tell your doctor as soon as you can
- Low magnesium levels warning: use of this medicine for three months or longer may cause low magnesium levels in your body
- If you have been taking this medicine for more than a year, get your serum electrolytes and magnesium tested
Mode of Action of Omeprazole
How Does It Work?
Omeprazole decreases the amount of acid which stomach produces. It does this by blocking a system in the cells of your stomach called the proton pump. The proton pump in the stomach is crucial for acid production. Stomach makes less acid as when proton pump is blocked. This can help decrease your symptoms.
Interactions of Omeprazole
Interactions with other medicines
- Tell your doctor if you are taking any of these medicines as Omeprazole may influence their effectiveness
- Omeprazole may interact with medicines such as Warfarin, Clopidogrel, Digoxin, Cyclosporine, Phenytoin, Ketoconazole, Voriconazole and iron supplements
- Medicines are given in HIV patients (such as Nelfinavir, Tenofovir, Atazanavir, Rilpivirine, etc.) and medicine like Methotrexate and Erlotinib are known to show interactions
Interactions with food items
There are no known interactions with food or beverages. However, nicotine, caffeine (coffee, tea, chocolate and cola) and alcohol can stimulate stomach acid or delay ulcer healing and hinder the treatment process.
Dietary Restrictions of Omeprazole
Avoid spicy foods as these are known to increase acidity and can worsen your underlying condition.
Dosage of Omeprazole
Overdose symptoms are confusion, drowsiness, blurred vision, rapid heartbeat, nausea, vomiting, sweating, flushing (sudden rush of feeling of warmth), headache, dry mouth. Seek emergency medical attention immediately.
Missed a Dose
If you missed any dose, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is time for the next dose, then skip the missed dose and continue the regular dosage schedule. Do not take extra medicine to compensate for the missed dose.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What should I tell my healthcare expert before starting this medication?
A: Some studies link Omeprazole to stomach cancer. It is important to share if you have any personal or family history of stomach cancer. It is also important for you to share information on the history of HIV/ AIDS, liver cirrhosis or other critical conditions that you are suffering from. Also, disclose to your doctor all the ongoing medications, supplements that you are taking.
Q: What is the best time to take this medicine?
A: It is recommended that you take your capsules in the morning.
- Lactmed.omeprazole. [Accessed 19 Jun.2019] (online) Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US); 2006-. Omeprazole. [Updated 2018 Oct 31].
- Healthline.omeprazole. [Accessed 19 Jun.2019] (online)
- Ema.omeprazole. [Accessed 19 Jun.2019] (online)
- Ema.omeprazole. [Accessed 19 Jun.2019] (online)
- Dailymed.omeprazole. [Accessed 19 Jun.2019] (online)
Last Updated on: 05 Oct 2020 | 10:47 PM (IST)
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