What is Nexium and what does it do?
Nexium tablets help to relieve the symptoms associated with acid reflux and other gastrointestinal conditions such as ulcers, heartburn, nausea, stomach pain, bloating and belching, etc. This medicine contains the active ingredient, esomeprazole and belongs to a group of medicines known as proton pump inhibitors which are used to reduce the amount of acid produced in the stomach.
Nexium is primarily prescribed to treat conditions associated with excess stomach acid such as gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) and different types of ulcers of the stomach and gut.
How does Nexium work to relieve symptoms?
The active ingredient in Nexium is a proton pump inhibitor which is key in reducing the amount of acid that the stomach produces. It does this by blocking the enzyme that produces acid in the stomach which allows any ulcers in the stomach or oesophagus to heal and therefore reduces symptoms of ulcers and acid reflux such as nausea, heartburn, burping and bloating.
Who is suitable to take Nexium medication?
Nexium is suitable for adults who have any of the following conditions:
- Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD)
- Ulcers in the stomach or gut caused by a H-Pylori infection, antibiotics may also be prescribed for this
- Stomach ulcers caused by taking NSAIDs
- Excess stomach acid caused by a growth in the pancreas
If you’re suffering from heartburn or acid reflux, or you have a stomach ulcer that needs to heal, Nexium may be prescribed to help reduce the amount of acid being produced to prevent further damage.
Nexium may also be suitable for adolescents over the age of 12 years old to treat GORD and ulcers in the stomach or gut that may be infected with H.Pylori.
Who should not take Nexium?
In some cases, Nexium will not be suitable for some people, particularly if you have a certain health condition or you’re taking medication which may interact with Nexium. You must not take Nexium tablets if you are allergic to esomeprazole or any other ingredient in this medicine. Allergic reactions can be severe so it’s important to avoid this medicine if you’re aware that you have an allergy to any of its ingredients, the same applies if you are allergic to any other proton pump medicines such as lansoprazole, omeprazole, etc. Do not take Nexium if you’re taking an HIV medicine known as nelfinavir.
Take special care and always speak to your doctor before taking this medicine if any of the following apply to you:
- You have severe liver problems
- You have severe kidney problems
- You have had a skin reaction to similar medicine that reduces stomach acid
- You have osteoporosis
- You are due to have a Chromogranin A blood test
- You’re having problems swallowing and have lost a lot of weight unintentionally
- You have stomach pain or indigestion
- You’re vomiting or vomiting up blood
- You pass black stools
Do not take Nexium unless you have discussed these conditions or symptoms with your doctor and your doctor has told you you’re safe to take this medicine.
Can I take Nexium with other medicines?
Whenever you begin a new medication always tell your doctor or pharmacist about any other medicines you’re taking whether they are prescription or non-prescription or even herbal, to ensure there isn’t a risk of interaction between the medicines. The HIV medicine nelfinavir should not be taken with Nexium and there is a list of medicines on the patient information leaflet which could interact with Nexium and therefore you should discuss this with your doctor if you’re taking any of the medicines listed, this includes other HIV medicines, medicines to treat fungal infections such as ketoconazole, certain medicines to treat depression, and diazepam to treat anxiety, etc.
Nexium and pregnancy
It’s not normally recommended that women take medicines containing esomeprazole during pregnancy or if they’re trying to get pregnant. However, speak to your GP about taking this medicine as they can weigh up the risks and benefits to you and your unborn baby.
It’s not known whether esomeprazole passes into breast milk, therefore it should be avoided if you’re breastfeeding to avoid the possibility of this medicine coming into contact with your child and causing harm.
What are the side effects of Nexium?
Nexium may cause side effects, all medicines can cause side effects, although not everyone gets them. You should contact a doctor immediately if you notice any signs of an allergic reaction. Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:
- Sudden wheezing, swelling of your lips, tongue and throat or body, skin rash, fainting or difficulties swallowing
- Signs of Stevens-Johnson syndrome including red, blistered or peeling skin, or severe blistering in the eyes, lips, mouth, nose, and genitals
- Signs of liver problems such as yellow skin, dark pee, and tiredness
Common side effects from taking Nexium include:
- Diarrhoea, stomach pain, constipation, and flatulence
- Nausea or vomiting
- Benign polyps in the stomach
Other less common side effects may include:
- Dry mouth
- Disturbed sleep
- Itchy skin, rash or hives
- A feeling of “pins and needles”
- Swelling of the feet and ankles
Refer to the patient information leaflet to see rare side effects. If you do experience any side effects that aren’t listed or any negative changes to your health, do tell your doctor as they may be able to reduce your dose or try an alternative medication.
Can I reduce the risk of getting side effects?
Yes. You should always read the patient information leaflet thoroughly before use as this can help reduce the risk of side effects and interactions between medicines. Below are a few things you can do:
While filling in the medical questionnaire, remember to include any other medicines you are taking. Nexium can affect how other medicines work, so it is important that you tell our doctors about all the medicine you take. Don’t forget to also include over the counter medication and supplements.
Reduce the amount of alcohol you drink or exclude alcohol completely until your course has finished. There isn’t a direct interaction between Nexium and alcohol, but alcohol can increase the risk of side effects of most drugs, plus it doesn’t help acid reflux symptoms.
What is the recommended Nexium dosage?
You should follow the doctor’s instructions on how to take this medicine. The doses outlined below are for your reference only. The tablets can be taken with or without food and must be swallowed whole with a drink of water. Do not chew or crush the tablets.
Never exceed the stated dose.
Nexium doses for adults and the elderly:
For the treatment of heartburn caused by gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD):
If it has been determined that your gullet (food pipe) has been slightly damaged, take 40mg per day for 4 weeks. If your gullet has not healed by the end of the course, the doctor may instruct you to take the same dose for another 4 weeks.
The recommended dose, once your gullet has healed, is 20mg per day.
If your gullet has not been damaged, take 20mg per day until the condition is under control.
For the treatment of ulcers caused by Helicobacter pylori infection, and to prevent it coming back:
The doctor may instruct you to take 20mg per day for 7 days in combination with antibiotics.
For the treatment of stomach ulcers caused by NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs):
Take 20mg per day for 4 to 6 to 8 weeks. The doctor will instruct you on how long to take the tablets for.
For the prevention of stomach ulcers when taking NSAIDs
The doctor may recommend you to take 20mg per day while taking NSAIDs.
For the treatment of too much stomach acid caused by a growth in the pancreas (Zollinger-Ellison syndrome):
The doctor may recommend you to take 40mg twice per day.
How do I buy Nexium online?
To legally and safely buy Nexium online you need a prescription from a GMC (General Medical Council) registered doctor. Our online doctor service allows you to request a prescription through a medical questionnaire.
Once you have chosen your medicine and submitted the questionnaire, it will be reviewed by one of our doctors. If suitable, the doctor will accept your request and a prescription will be issued. Your medicine will then be dispensed by our UK pharmacy and sent by tracked delivery to your chosen address. Your medicine is usually dispatched within 24 hours after ordering.
How is my order shipped to me?
When an order is ready for shipping, it is collected and delivered by either the Royal Mail or DPD depending on your preference (or possibly your location or the item you ordered). Each order is assigned a tracking number, which will be emailed to you at the time of dispatch. Your medicine will be sent in plain and discreet packaging that’s eco-friendly. We do not include any branding on our packaging nor any labels which inform readers what type of product is contained within.
Advice on Addiction and Medication Restrictions
If you are at all worried or concerned about an addiction to any type of medication, we urge you to speak to a professional for help and advice. Below are links to organisations that can help.
Talk To Frank
NHS Help & Advice On Drug Addiction