Compare Maalox vs. Zantac

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

(Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone)

Zantac 75

Relieves heartburn and acid tummy. Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone) gives quick relief for heartburn, gas, and bloating. It may not be as effective or last as long as alternative antacids though.Relieves heartburn. Zantac 75 (Ranitidine) works well for heartburn but may not last as long or start working as quickly as other antacids.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
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Reviews for Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone)
of people say Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone) is worth it
say it works well
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Zantac 75 (Ranitidine)
+4% vs. Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone)
+13% vs. Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone)
+2% vs. Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone)
Side effects

We haven’t found good data for Maalox side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Maalox »

The Zantac FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Zantac side effects »
How it works
Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone) is a combination medicine for stomach trouble. Aluminum and magnesium are antacids that relieve heartburn and acid tummy (indigestion). Simethicone relieves gas and bloating.Zantac 75 (Ranitidine) is an H2 blocker. It blocks the chemical histamine, which lowers acid production in your stomach. This treats heartburn and helps ulcers heal.
Type of medication
Acid reducer
Histamine blocker
Prescription or OTC
Available as
  • Chewable tablet
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Oral solution
  • Injection
Used for (click to learn more)
Risk factors for serious side effects
  • Age 65 or older
    • Current kidney disease
      Detailed Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone) risks & warnings »
        • Current kidney problems
        • Current liver problems
        • Acute Porphyria
        • History of Phenylketonuria (PKU)
        Detailed Zantac 75 (Ranitidine) risks & warnings »
        Pregnancy category
        NFDA pregnancy category (Unknown)

        The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

        See the FDA package insert
        BFDA pregnancy category (Probably safe)

        Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

        See the FDA package insert
        No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
        • Take 1-3 hours after a meal.
        No specific food-related info.
        Kidneys and liver
        • People with kidney disease may need to avoid Maalox. Ask your doctor.
        • If you have kidney disease Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone) can build up in your blood. This may can cause toxic levels of aluminum or magnesium in your body. This is more likely if you have severe kidney disease (defined as a kidney function blood test called GFR of less than 30ml/min). If you have severe kidney disease or are on kidney dialysis don't use Maalox (Aluminum / Magnesium / Simethicone); a different antacid would be better for you.
        • People with kidney disease may need to take a lower dose.
        • Zantac 75 (Ranitidine) is processed by the kidney and liver. If you have kidney or liver problems, you may need a different dose to prevent this increased risk for side effects.
        No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
        No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
        No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
        Upsides and benefits
        • Works really fast.
        • Available over the counter without a prescription.
        • Cheap.
        • Most people can take Ranitidine without any noticeable day-to-day side effects.
        • Ranitidine lasts longer than many other antacids like Maalox and Tums, and you only need to take it once or twice a day.
        • You can take it in combination with a quick-acting antacid (like Maalox or Tums) if you need relief right away.
        • Available as both a generic and over-the-counter option, so it's pretty affordable.
        • Few drug interactions.
        Downsides and risks
        • Doesn't last very long.
        • Other antacids like Zantac (H2 blockers) and omeprazole (proton pump inhibitors) can work better and last longer.
        • Some people don't care for the taste.
        • Other antacids like Maalox, Tums, or Rolaids often start to work more quickly than Ranitidine.
        • Medication like omeprazole (proton pump inhibitors) works better at healing and preventing stomach ulcers than medication like Ranitidine (H2 blockers).
        Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
        • Take 1-3 hours after a meal.
        • Take 1-2 hours apart from other medication that you take by mouth.
        • Tell your doctor if you have severe diarrhea or constipation.
        • People with kidney disease may need to avoid Maalox. Ask your doctor.
        • Works best if you take it with a full glass of water.
        • Starts working in one hour.
        • If heartburn doesn't improve or lasts more than 2 weeks, talk to your doctor.
        • People with kidney disease may need to take a lower dose.
        Learn more
        More about MaaloxSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
        More about ZantacSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert