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Drug InfoNet Doctors' Answers to Frequently Asked Questions - Prevacid

Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Prevacid


These comments are made for the purpose of discussion and should NOT be used as recommendations for or against therapies or other treatments. An individual patient is always advised to consult their own physician.

Prevacid and Vitamin b12 deficiency [posted 1/11/99]
Question: I take 30 mg of prevacid each day (two, 15 mg tablets) because of a 14 month old diagnosis of short Barretts Esophagus (1.5 cm, no dysplasia). I have been told that taking this much prevacid can lead to a vitamin b12 deficiency since prevacid reduces the ability of intrinsic factor to process the vitamin. I have also been told that taking additional vitamin b12 orally will not help because it will not be processed. I now have some slight symptoms of a vitamin b12 deficiency (periodic tingling in the feet and hands, some unexplained fatigue, slight muscle spasms and an odd sense that my balance is not quite right). Is it true that prevacid can lead to vitamin b12 deficiency?

Answer: I guess I'm not sure what you are asking me. The problem with B 12 is the decrease in acid necessary to cleave B12 from its intrinsic food source. This is theoretical and hasn't been seen clinically, as far as I know. However, oral B12 would fix this problem.

Prevacid & Hair Loss  [posted 12/01/98]
Question: I am 54 yr. old and have taken Prevacid for 6 months. About 2 months ago I began to notice hair loss for the first time. Is there a relationship?

Answer: Possibly, listed as one of the side effects, stop it and see.

Prevacid vs. Prilosec [posted 11/25/98]
Question: I have been taking Prilosec for a year. The Insurance company now says that it will pay for Prevacid. What is the difference? Will Prevacid work as well for stomach acid/reflux as Prilosec? Are there any drawback to either medicine? Am I better off having the surgery to fix the reflux? I realize that this is just general information and that I will get more information from my doctor. I am working with our family doctor. I am just interested in additional opinions. Thanks for listening and responses.

Answer: The drugs work about the same. If anything Prevacid might be a little better, but clinically about the same. If you are having severe reflux and are young, surgery is an alternative. If only occasionally and older, focus on the Prevacid.

Can You Crush Prevacid in Order to Ingest It [posted 11/10/98]
Question: My daugher was diagnosed with gastritis a week and a half ago. She has cerebral palsy and has great difficulty eating or swallowing. Her total nutrition is fed through a G-tube, as her medication is also put through the G-tube. She was prescribed prevacid to help her with her reflux and gastritis, but the bottle says to "swallow whole, do not crush". In order to get the medication through the G-tube, I have found that I have to lightly crush the contents, otherwise they get stuck. Is this all right? I sent an e-mail last week, but have not heard anything. Thanks

Answer: Prevacid can be crushed, prilosec cannot.

Concerns of Prevacid & Lipitor Interactions [posted 10/28/98]
Question: I have been taking Lipitor for a year with good results 147 total 78 ldl 40 hdl 140 tri. Started taking prevacid two months ago for severe acid reflux. Taking 2 30mg's per day for acid control. Last week had Cholesteral panel redone and number were very high for me 199 total, 114 ldl, 40 hdl, 223 tri. Diet is unchanged. Could prevacid react or cause Lipitor from working?

Answer: Not that I'm aware of. Recheck it. Have you gained weight since you stomach has been doing better?

Longterm Concerns about Prevacid [posted 10/28/98]
Question: I was wondering if there were any side effect from long term usage of prevasid. Or what are the short term effects are. Thank you

Answer: Hasn't been around long enough to get an accurate assessment of long term effects. Short term effects are usually GI, nausea, diarrhea etc. There is a long list of possible problems, but, they are rarely seen.

Headaches from Prevacid [posted 7/23/98]
Question: After taking 30 mg. of Prevacid twice a day for five days, I developed a headache in the temple area extending back over the ear. Waiting a week, I tried it again but developed the same headache on the fifth day again. What is the technical explanation for these type headaches? Is it advisable not to take Prevacid? If the headaches are not injurious, could I take Prevacid with a pain killer?

Answer: I haven't had any patients with this symptom complex and offhand I don't know of any connection. The PDR does not list it as a side effect, but if this occurs with you then it is. Try Prilosec. It's similar, but structurally different. Also, there would be no reason not to take some analgesia with the medication. I'd prefer to avoid aspirin and NSAIDS to decrease the inflammation of your stomach that prevacid is to treat.

Prevacid and H. Pylori
Question: I was diagnosed having H. Pylori. I took the antibiotic, and was also prescribed Prevacid. I feel great when I take the prevacid, (I take one 30 mg tab each day) and it knocks out my stomach pain. However, as soon as 24 hours rolls around, the pain comes back. Is Prevacid safe to take for long periods of time? If not, what should my next move be?

Answer: It seems to be safe, but it has only been around for a couple of years. Has the infection been eradicated? This is very tough to do in some patients. Usually, I prescribe 3 or 4 antibiotics plus pepto bismol plus prevacid to increase the "cure" rate. Ensure that the bacteria is gone.

Prevacid and Ticlid
Question: Diagnosed from EGD - Small intestine mild acute and chronic inflammation. Stomach-chronic gastritis without activity. Prescribed Prevacid. Also diagnosed TIA and some stroke risk. Using Calan SR to control hypertension for a number of years. Under Doctors care but have some questions about drug therapies. Can I used both drugs together safely? How long should I use Prevacid and how do I know if it is working? I am a 67 year old male.

Answer: There shouldn't be any interaction that I am aware of . Prevacid is usually used for a maximum of 2-3 months although with continued experience 6-8 months durations are sometimes used. You will know if it is working if your symptoms of acidity, pain, gastritis are reduced.

Prevacid for Gas
Question: I was told to swallow one Prevacid tablet per day to cure Gas problem(Bulging). I have already taken 55 tablets in 65 days. But still I am suffering with Bulging. I have undergone upper endoscopy test. It seems there is no infection or no ulcer, nothing. Every thing seems to be good. Since every thing is good, why do I have this gas problem? According to my self study, I think, I am getting gas due to anxiety? Is it correct? If I don't take prevacid one day, that day I get heart burn in the night. So how long I should take this tablet? Please give some details about Gas and cure.

Answer: Prevacid is very good as decreasing acid and heartburn. Less good at decreasing gas. We aren't really sure why people get gas. It is clear that some patients swallow air(especially with chronic anxiety). Dairy products and high fiber products will also occasionally produce this problem. I'd keep on the prevacid for the acid; but, I suspect your gas will continue. Has your gall bladder been evaluated?



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