Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.
Tags: Digestive Problems | antacids | heartburn | pepcid | hibberd

Can Taking Antacids for Years Hurt Me?

Monday, 29 Jul 2013 09:58 AM

Question: I have been using an antacid for heartburn for more than 20 years. Could this have any negative long-term effects?

Dr. Hibberd’s answer:
Long-term use of an antacid like Pepcid AC is usually a clue you need a physician evaluation. Although the product can be safely used for a long time under a physician’s supervision, it’s important to first determine what’s causing the problem and whether there is a better treatment.
All drugs can have adverse side effects, and though antacids are commonly available without a prescription, your long-term use exceeds the period advised for self-management of heartburn. See your doctor and consider an endoscopic evaluation to check the health of your esophagus and stomach to be sure you don’t have a more serious problem.

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