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Gastritis (cont.)

Gastritis Medications

Histamine (H2) blockers: Four histamine blockers are available in the United States. Some are available without a prescription (see above); others require a prescription.

  • H2 blockers work by blocking the release of acid from specialized glands in the stomach.
  • The theory is that producing less acid allows the stomach to heal.
  • Once healed, the previously inflamed stomach then causes no further symptoms.
  • Commonly prescribed H2-blockers include cimetidine (Tagamet), famotidine (Pepcid), nizatidine (Axid), and ranitidine (Zantac).

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs): These medications are very powerful blockers of the stomach's ability to secrete acid.

  • A health care provider who prescribes one of these medications to treat the patient's gastritis may be doing so in consultation with a gastroenterologist.
  • Examples of PPIs include lansoprazole (Prevacid) and omeprazole (Prilosec, Losec).

Coating agents: These medications protect the stomach's lining.

  • Sucralfate (Carafate) - Coats and protects the stomach lining
  • Misoprostol (Cytotec) - Also protects the stomach lining, used as a preventive measure for people taking NSAIDs who are at high risk of developing stomach damage

Antibiotics: An antibiotic may be prescribed if H pylori is demonstrated to be the cause of the patient's gastritis.

Antiemetics: Antiemetic medications help control nausea and vomiting. A number of different antiemetics can be used in the emergency department to control gastritis symptoms. Some of these medications are available by prescription for home use as well. Note that these medications do not improve the gastritis, but rather only decrease the symptoms of gastritis.

Medical Editor:

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Gastritis, Acute »

Acute gastritis is a term covering a broad spectrum of entities that induce inflammatory changes in the gastric mucosa.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


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