• Ranitidine

    (ra nye' te deen)

    WHY is this medicine prescribed?

    Ranitidine is used to treat ulcers; gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition in which backward flow of acid from the stomach causes heartburn and injury of the food pipe (esophagus); and conditions where the stomach produces too much acid, such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Over-the-counter ranitidine is used to prevent and treat symptoms of heartburn associated with acid indigestion and sour stomach. Ranitidine is in a class of medications called H2 blockers. It decreases the amount of acid made in the stomach.

    HOW should this medicine be used?

    Ranitidine comes as a tablet, an effervescent tablet, effervescent granules, and a syrup to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day at bedtime or two to four times a day. Over-the-counter ranitidine comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once or twice a day. To prevent symptoms, it is taken 30 to 60 minutes before eating or drinking foods that cause heartburn. Follow the directions on your prescription or the package label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take ranitidine exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
    Dissolve ranitidine effervescent tablets and granules in a full glass (6 to 8 ounces [180 to 240 milliliters]) of water before drinking.
    Do not take over-the-counter ranitidine for longer than 2 weeks unless your doctor tells you to. If symptoms of heartburn, acid indigestion, or sour stomach last longer than 2 weeks, stop taking ranitidine and call your doctor.

    Are there OTHER USES for this medicine?

    Ranitidine is also used sometimes to treat upper gastrointestinal bleeding and to prevent stress ulcers, stomach damage from use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and aspiration of stomach acid during anesthesia. Talk to your doctor about the risks of using this medication for your condition.
    This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

    What SPECIAL PRECAUTIONS should I follow?

    Before taking ranitidine,
    • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to ranitidine or any other medications.
    • tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking. Be sure to mention either of the following: anticoagulants ('blood thinners') such as warfarin (Coumadin); and triazolam (Halcion). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
    • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had porphyria, phenylketonuria, or kidney or liver disease.
    • tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking ranitidine, call your doctor.

    What SPECIAL DIETARY instructions should I follow?

    Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.

    What should I do IF I FORGET to take a dose?

    Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

    What SIDE EFFECTS can this medicine cause?

    Ranitidine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
    • headache
    • constipation
    • diarrhea
    • nausea
    • vomiting
    • stomach pain
    Ranitidine may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

    What should I know about STORAGE and DISPOSAL of this medication?

    Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.

    What should I do in case of OVERDOSE?

    In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.

    What OTHER INFORMATION should I know?

    Keep all appointments with your doctor.
    Before having any laboratory test, tell your doctor and the laboratory personnel that you are taking ranitidine.
    Do not let anyone else take your medicine. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
    It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.

    Brand Names

    • Tritec®[¶]
    • Zantac®
    • Zantac® 75
    • Zantac® EFFERdose®
    • Zantac® Premixed
    • Zantac® Syrup
    • Also available generically
    These branded products are no longer on the market and only generic alternatives are available.

    Ranitidine Hydrochloride Injection

    (ra ni' ti deen)

    WHY is this medicine prescribed?

    Your doctor has ordered ranitidine hydrochloride to decrease the acid produced by your stomach.
    Ranitidine may be added to an intravenous fluid that will drip through a needle or catheter placed in your vein for 15-20 minutes, one to four times a day. It also may be added to your total parenteral nutrition (TPN) solution.
    Ranitidine decreases acid in your stomach to help treat an ulcer or prevent one from developing. Ranitidine helps to decrease the stomach pain, diarrhea, and loss of appetite that ulcers can cause. This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
    Your health care provider (doctor, nurse, or pharmacist) may measure the effectiveness and side effects of your treatment using laboratory tests and physical examinations. It is important to keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. The length of treatment depends on how you respond to the medication.

    What SPECIAL PRECAUTIONS should I follow?

    Before administering ranitidine,
    • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to ranitidine or any other drugs.
    • tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially acetaminophen (Tylenol), anticoagulants ('blood thinners') such as warfarin (Coumadin), propantheline, and vitamins.
    • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney or liver disease or acute porphyria.
    • tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking ranitidine, call your doctor.

    HOW should this medicine be used?

    Before you administer ranitidine, look at the solution closely. It should be clear and free of floating material. Gently squeeze the bag or observe the solution container to make sure there are no leaks. Do not use the solution if it is discolored, if it contains particles, or if the bag or container leaks. Use a new solution, but show the damaged one to your health care provider.
    It is important that you use your medication exactly as directed. Do not change your dosing schedule without talking to your health care provider. Your health care provider may tell you to stop your infusion if you have a mechanical problem (such as a blockage in the tubing, needle, or catheter); if you have to stop an infusion, call your health care provider immediately so your therapy can continue.

    What SIDE EFFECTS can this medicine cause?

    Ranitidine may cause side effects. Tell your health care provider if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
    • headache
    • dizziness
    • constipation
    • diarrhea
    • stomach pain
    • upset stomach

    What should I know about STORAGE and DISPOSAL of this medication?

    • Your health care provider probably will give you a several-day supply of ranitidine at a time. If you are receiving ranitidine intravenously (in your vein), you probably will be told to store it in the refrigerator or freezer.
    • Take your next dose from the refrigerator 1 hour before using it; place it in a clean, dry area to allow it to warm to room temperature.
    • If you are told to store additional ranitidine in the freezer, always move a 24-hour supply to the refrigerator for the next day's use.
    • Do not refreeze medications.
    If you are receiving ranitidine mixed with TPN, you may be directed to keep it in a clean, dry area away from heat.
    Store your medication only as directed. Make sure you understand what you need to store your medication properly.
    Keep your supplies in a clean, dry place when you are not using them, and keep all medications and supplies out of reach of children. Your health care provider will tell you how to throw away used needles, syringes, tubing, and containers to avoid accidental injury.

    What should I do in case of OVERDOSE?

    In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.

    What are the SIGNS OF AN INFECTION?

    If you are receiving ranitidine in your vein or under your skin, you need to know the symptoms of a catheter-related infection (an infection where the needle enters your vein or skin). If you experience any of these effects near your intravenous catheter, tell your health care provider as soon as possible:
    • tenderness
    • warmth
    • irritation
    • drainage
    • redness
    • swelling
    • pain

    Brand Names

    • Zantac®
    • Zantac® Premixed
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