Zantac During Pregnancy: Is It Safe?

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Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful times of a woman’s life but with that also comes a few discomforts one has to handle. Considering heartburn, it begins late in the first trimester and can continue to get worse throughout the pregnancy. in order to treat the same, one may turn to an over-the-counter medication like Zantac to reduce acid. In this article, we will be discussing Zantac and whether it should be taken during pregnancy or not.

All You Need to Know About Using Taking Zantac During Pregnancy

How pregnancy leads to heartburn?

The body produces more of the hormone progesterone during pregnancy, which may reduce the valve between the stomach and the esophagus. The valve stays closed to keep acid in the stomach but when it’s relaxed, like during pregnancy, it may open and allow the acid to go into your esophagus. This can further lead to irritation as well as symptoms of heartburn.

zantac and pregnancy

In fact, when the uterus expands, it puts pressure on the digestive tract which may send stomach acid into the esophagus.

How to treat heartburn during pregnancy?

Over-the-counter medications do not have pregnancy categories but taking into account Zantac, it is considered a pregnancy category B drug by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). What we mean by category B is that Zantac is not shown to be harmful to the developing fetus as per the studies.

Though Zantac is considered to be safe during pregnancy, doctors usually do not recommend Zantac for pregnant women going through mild heartburn that occurs frequently or even less than three times a week. Oftentimes, it is suggested to change your diet or other habits. If that fails to bring any sort of relief, you may be suggested medication.

OTC antacid or prescription sucralfate is the first-line drug treatment for heartburn during pregnancy. antacids consist of calcium and sucralfate acts in the stomach and only a small amount absorbs into the bloodstream which means there’s a very low risk of exposure for the developing baby.

It takes a while for Zantac to work which is why it is taken in advance to prevent heartburn. It may be taken 30-60 minutes before you eat. One can take 75 mg of the drug once or twice per day if you have mild heartburn that does not occur very often. However, if you have moderate heartburn, you can take 150 mg of Zantac once or twice per day.

Also, the maximum dosage for Zantac is 300 mg per day so you are not recommended to take more than twice a day.

Are there any side effects of Zantac?

Zantac is usually tolerated well by most people. Listed below are a few side effects of Zantac that may be caused by pregnancy:

  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Headache
  • Drowsiness

Dizziness is another side effect that may cause and it is dangerous because that may cause you to fall.

One of the serious side effects that may be caused by Zantac is low platelet levels. Platelets are essential for your blood to clot. Nevertheless, the platelet levels will return back to normal once you stop taking the medication.

Are there any interactions?

Some drugs require stomach acid to be absorbed by your body. On the other side, Zantac reduces the acid level in your stomach so it can interact with those medications that need stomach. Listed below are a few drugs:

  • Indinavir
  • Atazanavir
  • Iron salts
  • Ketoconazole
  • Itraconazole

How does it work?

Zantac is used to provide relief from heartburn from indigestion and sour stomach that may be caused due to eating or drinking certain foods and beverages.

OTC Zantac comes in a tablet form and the main ingredient it consists of is ranitidine. It is available in 75 and 150 mg and comes in different strengths and forms.

It is used to treat heartburn symptoms from acid indigestion and a sour stomach. Whereas, prescription-strength Zantac treats more serious gastrointestinal diseases which include ulcers and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

In addition to this, nausea won’t be treated with the help of this drug unless it is directly related to the heartburn.

Conclusion:

Make sure you inform your doctor if you continue to suffer from heartburn after suing Zantac for two weeks. There could be chances of another health issue like an ulcer or some serious stomach issues, which is to be blamed for the same. in case, you have the following symptoms, inform your doctor as soon as possible:

  • Vomiting with blood
  • Bloody or black stools
  • Pain while swallowing food
  • Heartburn symptoms that last longer than 3 months.

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