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famotidine (pepcid)

available over the counter: yes

uses: treatment of heartburn, ulcers of stomach and duodenum, conditions which cause excessive production of gastric acid, and gastroesophageal reflux

mechanism of action: blocks action of histamine, and therefore decreases secretion of hydrochloric acid

side effects
• common:
headache, fatigue, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting
• less common: blurred vision, decreased sexual desire or function, swelling of breasts in men and women, temporary hair loss
• serious: irregular heart rhythm, bleeding difficulties, bruising, fever, chills

concerns: do not take prescription medication for more than 8 weeks unless advised by doctor;  do not take over the counter medication for more than 2 weeks


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