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Generic Name: rabeprazole (ra BEP ra zole)
Brand Name: AcipHex, AcipHex Sprinkle

What is rabeprazole?

Rabeprazole is a proton pump inhibitor that decreases the amount of acid produced in the stomach.

Rabeprazole is used short-term to treat symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) in adults and children who are at least 1 year old.

Rabeprazole is used only in adults to treat conditions involving excessive stomach acid, such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Rabeprazole is also used in adults to promote healing of duodenal ulcers or erosive esophagitis (damage to your esophagus caused by stomach acid).

Rabeprazole may also be given with an antibiotic to prevent duodenal ulcer caused by infection with Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori).

Rabeprazole is not for immediate relief of heartburn symptoms.

Rabeprazole may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about rabeprazole?

Rabeprazole can cause kidney problems, an intestinal infection, or lupus (an autoimmune disorder).

Call your doctor right away if you have new or worsening joint pain, a skin rash that gets worse in sunlight, severe stomach pain, watery or bloody diarrhea, blood in your urine, or little or no urination.

Taking rabeprazole may increase your risk of bone fracture in the hip, wrist, or spine, especially if you take the medicine long term or more than once per day.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking rabeprazole?

Heartburn is often confused with the first symptoms of a heart attack. Seek emergency medical attention if you have chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, and a general ill feeling.

You should not use this medicine if you are allergic to rabeprazole or:

  • if you also take any medicine that contains rilpivirine, such as Edurant or Complera; or

  • if you also allergic to medicines like rabeprazole, such as esomeprazole (Nexium), lansoprazole (Prevacid), omeprazole (Prilosec, Zegerid), or pantoprazole (Protonix).

To make sure rabeprazole is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • liver disease;

  • osteoporosis or low bone mineral density (osteopenia);

  • lupus (an autoimmune disorder); or

  • low levels of magnesium in your blood.

Taking a proton pump inhibitor such as rabeprazole may increase your risk of bone fracture in the hip, wrist, or spine. This effect has occurred mostly in people who have taken the medicine long term or more than once per day, and in those who are age 50 and older. It is not clear whether rabeprazole is the actual cause of an increased risk of fracture.

It is not known whether this medicine will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether rabeprazole passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take rabeprazole?

Rabeprazole is usually taken once per day. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Rabeprazole is for short-term use only, usually 4 to 8 weeks. Your doctor may recommend a second course of treatment if you need additional healing time.

Do not give this medicine to a child without medical advice. Certain forms and strengths of rabeprazole should not be given to a child younger than 12 years old.

AcipHex Sprinkle should not be given to a child younger than 1 year old.

When treating H. pylori infection, rabeprazole may be needed for only 7 days. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.

Take this medicine with a full glass of water.

If you take rabeprazole to treat duodenal ulcers, take the medicine after a meal. If you take rabeprazole to prevent ulcers caused by Helicobacter pylori, take the medicine with food. If you take rabeprazole for any other condition, you may take the medicine with or without food.

The rabeprazole delayed-release capsule (AcipHex Sprinkle) should be taken 30 minutes before a meal.

Do not crush, break, or chew a rabeprazole tablet. Swallow it whole.

To take delayed-release rabeprazole (AcipHex Sprinkle), open the capsule and sprinkle the medicine into a spoonful of soft food such as applesauce, yogurt, or baby food made from fruit or vegetable. You may also mix the medicine with apple juice, Pedialyte, or infant formula. Swallow right away without chewing. Do not save the mixture for later use; it will go bad after 15 minutes.

Some conditions are treated with a combination of rabeprazole and antibiotics. Use all medications as directed by your doctor. Read all patient information, medication guides, and instruction sheets provided to you. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Do not change your doses or medication schedule without your doctor's advice.

Take your medicine for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before your condition is completely cleared.

This medicine can cause unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using rabeprazole.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve, or if they get worse while using rabeprazole.

If you use rabeprazole for longer than 3 years, you could develop a vitamin B-12 deficiency. Talk to your doctor about how to manage this condition if you develop it.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking rabeprazole?

This medicine can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or bloody, call your doctor. Do not use anti-diarrhea medicine unless your doctor tells you to.

Rabeprazole side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe stomach pain, diarrhea that is watery or bloody;

  • seizure (convulsions);

  • kidney problems--urinating more or less than usual, blood in your urine, swelling, rapid weight gain;

  • symptoms of lupus--new or worsening joint pain, skin rash on your cheeks and arms (worsens in sunlight);

  • symptoms of low magnesium--dizziness, confusion; fast or uneven heart rate; tremors (shaking) or jerking muscle movements; feeling jittery; muscle pain or weakness, muscle spasms in your hands and feet; cough or choking feeling; or

  • signs of bleeding (if you also take warfarin)--headaches, unusual weakness, dizziness; unusual bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums); red or pink urine; abnormal vaginal bleeding or heavy menstrual flow; bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds; or any bleeding that will not stop.

Common side effects may include:

  • headache;

  • sore throat;

  • diarrhea, constipation; or

  • stomach pain, gas, nausea, vomiting.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Side Effects (complete list)

Rabeprazole dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Duodenal Ulcer:

20 mg orally once a day
-Duration of therapy: 4 weeks

Comment: While most patients achieve ulcer healing after 4 weeks, some patients may need an additional course of therapy to achieve ulcer healing.

Use: Healing and symptomatic relief of duodenal ulcers

Usual Adult Dose for Erosive Esophagitis:

20 mg orally once a day
-Duration of therapy: 4 to 8 weeks

Comment: If patients are not healed after 8 weeks, treatment for another 8 weeks may be considered.

Use: Short-term treatment for healing and symptomatic relief of erosive or ulcerative gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)

Usual Adult Dose for Gastric Ulcer:

20 mg orally once a day
-Duration of therapy: 4 to 8 weeks

Comment: If patients are not healed after 8 weeks, treatment for another 8 weeks may be considered.

Use: Short-term treatment for healing and symptomatic relief of erosive or ulcerative gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)

Usual Adult Dose for Duodenal Ulcer Prophylaxis:

20 mg orally once a day
-Duration of therapy: Up to 12 months

Comment: Controlled studies for maintenance therapy have not extended beyond 12 months.

Use: Maintenance of healing and reduction in relapse rates of heartburn symptoms in patients with erosive or ulcerative GERD

Usual Adult Dose for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease:

20 mg orally once a day
-Duration of therapy: Up to 4 weeks

Comment: If symptoms do not resolve after 4 weeks of therapy, an additional course of treatment may be considered.

Use: Treatment of daytime and nighttime heartburn and other symptoms associated with GERD

Usual Adult Dose for Helicobacter pylori Infection:

20 mg orally 2 times a day, taken concomitantly with amoxicillin and clarithromycin
-Duration of therapy: 7 days

-Refer to the manufacturer product information for dosing for amoxicillin and clarithromycin.
-All medications should be taken with morning and evening meals.
-Eradication of Helicobacter pylori has been shown to decrease the risk of duodenal ulcer recurrence.
-Patients who fail therapy should undergo susceptibility testing and/or begin alternative antimicrobial therapy.

Use: Treatment and eradication of H pylori and active/history of duodenal ulcer disease within 5 years

Usual Adult Dose for Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome:

Initial dose: 60 mg orally once a day
Maintenance dose: 60 mg orally 2 times a day or 100 mg orally once a day
Duration of therapy: Up to 1 year

-Doses should be patient-specific and should continue for as long as clinically necessary.
-Divided dosing may be required in some patients.

Use: Long-term treatment of pathological hypersecretory conditions (e.g., Zollinger-Ellison syndrome)

Usual Pediatric Dose for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease:

1 to 11 years:
Less than 15 kg: 5 mg orally once a day, with the option to increase to 10 mg if inadequate response
15 kg or more: 10 mg orally once a day
Duration of therapy: Up to 12 weeks

12 years or older: 20 mg orally once a day
-Duration of therapy: Up to 8 weeks

-Treatment of GERD
-Treatment of symptomatic GERD

What other drugs will affect rabeprazole?

Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:

  • methotrexate; or

  • warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven).

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with rabeprazole, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about rabeprazole.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 11.01.

Date modified: November 15, 2017
Last reviewed: September 18, 2017