Nexium is a proton pump inhibitor, and it works by reducing the amount of stomach acid. That’s why patients take it to treat the symptoms of GERD and other conditions that involve excessive stomach acid. Sometimes, doctors prescribe this medicine to promote healing of erosive esophagitis. Nexium can prevent gastric ulcers caused by the use of NSAIDs and helicobacter pylori infections. You shouldn’t take it for immediate relief of unwanted heartburn symptoms.
What to Do before Using Nexium
Before you start this treatment, inform doctors if you have any allergic reactions. Some people may confuse heartburn symptoms with the first signs of heart attacks. It’s necessary to seek immediate medical attention if you experience:
Heavy feeling and chest pain;
Nausea and unusual sweating;
General sick feeling and pain spreading to arms or shoulders.
To ensure that the intake of Nexium is safe, report such serious medical conditions as lupus, liver problems, low magnesium blood levels, osteopenia and osteoporosis to your doctor. This treatment may increase a risk of bone fractures, especially for older patients or higher doses.
How to Use Nexium
It’s allowed to take this drug only for 4-8 weeks, and only doctors can prescribe the second course of this treatment. You should take regular doses with enough water, 1 hour before meals. This medication can be given to some patients through a special NG feeding tube. When people take it for longer than 3 years, they have a high risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency. The use of Nexium may lead to unusual results of some medical tests.
Possible Side Effects
This medication may cause diarrhea that can be a sign of new infections. If you have bloody or watery diarrhea, call your physician at once. You need to get emergency medical help if you have any signs of allergic reactions, including swelling, drowsiness, difficulty breathing and so on. There are other severe side effects that can be caused by Nexium, including:
Seizures and severe stomach pain;
Swollen glands and joint pain;
Blood in the urine and other urine changes;
Sudden weight gain and swelling;
Confusion and severe dizziness;
Tremors and muscle cramps;
Uneven or fast heart rate.
These symptoms are very rare, but they all require immediate medical help. Nexium may cause mild side effects, such as gas, constipation, headaches, dry mouth, etc. If they persist, you also need to call your doctor.
Unwanted Drug Interactions
There are certain medications that may affect Nexium and cause drug interactions, and that’s why they should be avoided. Don’t combine this treatment with such drugs as diazepam, rifampin, warfarin, antifungal meds, AIDS drugs, iron-containing products and others. Let your doctor know everything about other pharmaceutical products that you’re taking, including over-the-counter and prescription meds, vitamins and minerals in addition to herbal supplements.