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Cimetidine

Pronunciation

Cimetidine is used for:

Treating and preventing heartburn from acid indigestion or sour stomach. It may also be used to treat other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Cimetidine is an H2-blocker. It works by blocking the action of histamine and reducing acid in the stomach.

Do NOT use cimetidine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in cimetidine or to other acid reducers
  • you are taking another acid reducing medicine

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Slideshow: OTC Medication Use In Pregnancy: Wise or Worrisome?

Before using cimetidine:

Some medical conditions may interact with cimetidine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have liver problems, kidney problems, persistent stomach pain or upset, or stomach ulcers
  • if you smoke or have trouble swallowing

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with cimetidine. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin), phenytoin, or theophylline because the risk of their side effects may be increased by cimetidine
  • Many other prescription and nonprescription medicines (eg, used for infections, inflammation, aches and pains, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, seizures), multivitamin products, and herbal or dietary supplements (eg, herbal teas, coenzyme Q10, garlic, ginseng, ginkgo, St. John's wort) may interact with cimetidine, increasing the risk of side effects

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if cimetidine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use cimetidine:

Use cimetidine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take cimetidine by mouth with or without food.
  • To prevent heartburn take cimetidine 30 minutes before eating foods or drinking liquids that cause heartburn.
  • Check with your doctor before taking antacids with cimetidine.
  • If you miss a dose of cimetidine, take it as soon as you remember. Continue to take it as directed by your doctor or on the package label.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use cimetidine.

Important safety information:

  • Cimetidine may cause dizziness or drowsiness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use cimetidine with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • If your symptoms do not get better within a few days, or if they get worse, check with your doctor.
  • Do NOT take more than the recommended dose or use for longer than 2 weeks without checking with your doctor.
  • Check with your doctor before you drink alcohol with cimetidine.
  • Use cimetidine with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
  • Cimetidine should not be used in CHILDREN younger than 12 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using cimetidine while you are pregnant. Cimetidine is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking cimetidine.

Possible side effects of cimetidine:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Diarrhea; headache.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); anxiety; breast enlargement; confusion; decreased sexual ability; depression; fast or slow heartbeat; mental or mood changes (eg, agitation, disorientation, hallucinations); muscle pain or weakness; severe or persistent stomach pain; unusual bruising or bleeding.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include difficulty breathing; fast heartbeat; restlessness; tremors; vomiting.

Proper storage of cimetidine:

Store cimetidine at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep cimetidine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about cimetidine, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Cimetidine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take cimetidine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about cimetidine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to cimetidine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using cimetidine.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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