Pantoprazole is a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) used to treat heartburn.

Pronunciation: pan-TOE-pra-zole

What are pantoprazole’s uses?

Pantoprazole’s uses include treating conditions in which there is too much acidity in the stomach. It works as an antacid, decreasing the amount of acid produced by the stomach. These conditions include oesophagitis (damage to the oesophagus from stomach acid) or heartburn caused by gastroesophageal reflux disease (Gerd), a condition where the acid in the stomach washes back up into the oesophagus.

Other benefits include treating Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, a condition where the stomach produces too much acid, ulcers and gout.

What dosage should you take?

Tablet doses depend on patient’s profile and the medical problem being treated.

First check the correct dosages with your Clicks pharmacist.

What special precautions should you take?

  • Don’t use for the immediate relief of heartburn symptoms.
  • Take the full course. Symptoms may improve before the condition is fully treated.
  • Has been linked to stomach cancer risk in long-term use. Consult with your doctor about your specific risk.
  • Long-term treatment with pantoprazole may also make it harder for your body to absorb vitamin B12. Consult with your doctor about your specific risk.
  • May increase your risk of bone fracture in the hip, wrist, or spine. This has occurred mostly in long-term users, at high doses, and in those who are age 50 and older.
  • It is considered safe to take during pregnancy but tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
  • Can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Avoid if breastfeeding.
  • Not approved for use by anyone younger than five years old.
  • If you are on pantoprazole for more than three months, levels of magnesium in your blood may fall. Discuss this with your doctor.

Pantoprazole should be used with caution if you suffer from the following conditions:

  • Severe liver disease
  • Low levels of magnesium in your blood
  • Osteoporosis
  • Low bone mineral density (osteopenia)

What drug interactions could you experience?

As a rule, always inform your doctor or Clicks pharmacist what prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements and herbal products you are taking or planning to take to ensure you don’t suffer the effects of adverse drug interactions.

What are pantoprazole’s side effects?

Common side effects could include:

  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat
  • Stomach pain, gas, nausea, vomiting.
  • Mild diarrhoea
  • Joint pain

This is not a complete list of side effects. It’s essential that you call your doctor should you notice any severe or odd side effects.

What are the overdose symptoms?

Call a doctor or the ambulance immediately if you notice the following symptoms:

  • Slow breathing and heart rate
  • Severe drowsiness
  • Muscle weakness
  • Cold and clammy skin
  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Fainting
The accuracy of this information was checked and approved by Clicks' pharmacist Waheed Abdurahman in August 2015