Ranitidine is an acid reducer available in over-the-counter (OTC) medicines that relieves or prevents heartburn symptoms associated with acid indigestion and sour stomach. It may be written as ranitidine or ranitidine hydrochloride, but it is the same active ingredient. Ranitidine is part of a group of acid reducers called histamine-2 antagonists, or H2 blockers.
Ranitidine is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is safe and effective when used according to label directions. If you have kidney disease, you should not use an OTC medicine containing ranitidine, unless you are under the advice and supervision of a doctor.
*Rantidine may not be contained in all products marketed under these brands. Please read the OTC Drug Facts label carefully for active ingredient information for specific products.
- You should never take more medicine or for a longer period of time than what the label says.
- You have kidney disease, unless your doctor tells you to.
- You are allergic to ranitidine or other acid reducers.
- You have trouble or pain swallowing food, vomiting with blood, or bloody or black stools.
- You are currently using another acid reducer.
- You have had heartburn for over three months.
- You have frequent chest pain, wheezing, unexplained weight loss, nausea or vomiting, or stomach pain.
- Your heartburn is accompanied by lightheadedness, sweating, or dizziness.
- You are experiencing chest or shoulder pain with shortness of breath; sweating; pain spreading to your arms, neck, or shoulders; or lightheadedness.
- You are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Your heartburn continues or gets worse.
- You need to take the medicine for more than 14 days.
- You take too much. Immediately contact a doctor or the poison control national helpline at 800.222.1222.
If you have questions about any of the medicines you are taking or if you have any unexpected side effects, talk to a healthcare professional. And of course, keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
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