Compare Pepcid vs. Tagamet

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

Pepcid
(Famotidine)

Tagamet
(Cimetidine)

Relieves heartburn. Pepcid (Famotidine) works well for heartburn but may not last as long or start working as quickly as other antacids.Relieves heartburn and acid tummy. Tagamet (Cimetidine) 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
Button Group. All currently active
5.08372641509434Pepcid
Reviews for Pepcid (Famotidine)
75%
of people say Pepcid (Famotidine) is worth it
41%
say it works well
8%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Tagamet (Cimetidine)
63%
12% vs. Pepcid (Famotidine)
36%
5% vs. Pepcid (Famotidine)
12%
4% vs. Pepcid (Famotidine)
Side effects
PepcidTagamet

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

More about Pepcid side effects »
  • Headache 2%
More Tagamet side effects »
How it works
PepcidTagamet
Pepcid (Famotidine) is a type of antacid called an H2 blocker. It blocks the chemical histamine, which lowers acid production in your stomach. This treats heartburn and helps ulcers heal.Tagamet (Cimetidine) is a type of antacid called 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
PepcidTagamet
Acid reducer
Histamine blocker
Prescription or OTC
Acid reducer
Histamine blocker
Prescription or OTC
Available as
PepcidTagamet
  • Pill
  • Chewable tablet
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Used for (click to learn more)
PepcidTagamet
Risk factors for serious side effects
PepcidTagamet
    • Current kidney disease
      Detailed Pepcid (Famotidine) risks & warnings »
        • Current kidney disease
        • Current liver disease
        • Age 50 or older
        • Current severe illness
          • Autoimmune disease
          • HIV or AIDS
          • Organ transplant
          • People without a spleen
          Detailed Tagamet (Cimetidine) risks & warnings »
          Pregnancy category
          PepcidTagamet
          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
          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
          Alcohol
          No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
          Food
          No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
          Kidneys and liver
          • Can cause more serious side effects for people with kidney disease. Ask your doctor to give you a lower dose or choose a different option.
          • Because Pepcid (Famotidine) is processed by the kidney it can cause some worrisome side effects for people with kidney problems. These include confusion, delirium, and a dangerous irregular heartbeat known as QT prolongation. If you have kidney problems, you may need a different dose to prevent this increased risk for side effects.
          • People with kidney disease may need to take a lower dose.
          • Tagamet (Cimetidine) can cause states of intense confusion. This is usually reversible when you stop taking Tagamet (Cimetidine). If you have kidney problems, you may need a different dose to prevent this increased risk for side effects. However, stopping Tagamet (Cimetidine) completely may be necessary.
          Sex
          No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
          Sleep
          No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
          Weight
          No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
          Upsides and benefits
          PepcidTagamet
          • Most people can take Famotidine without any noticeable day-to-day side effects.
          • Famotidine lasts longer than many other antacids like Maalox and Tums, and you only need to take it once or twice a day.
          • Few drug interactions.
          • 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.
          • Most people can take Cimetidine without any noticeable day-to-day side effects.
          • Cimetidine 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.
          Downsides and risks
          PepcidTagamet
          • Other antacids like Maalox, Tums, or Rolaids often start to work more quickly than Famotidine.
          • Medication like omeprazole (proton pump inhibitors) works better at healing and preventing stomach ulcers than medication like Famotidine (H2 blockers).
          • Can cause more serious side effects for people with kidney disease. Ask your doctor to give you a lower dose or choose a different option.
          • Other antacids like Maalox, Tums, or Rolaids often start to work more quickly than Cimetidine.
          • Medication like omeprazole (proton pump inhibitors) works better at healing and preventing stomach ulcers than medication like Cimetidine (H2 blockers).
          • Has more drug interactions than zantac and pepcid.
          • Although rare, Cimetidine can cause large breasts or impotence for men who need to use high doses for 6 months or more. It's reversible though and should go away when you stop or if you change medication.
          Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
          PepcidTagamet
          • Short-term treatment of ulcers and acid reflux.
          • 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.
          • Tell your doctor all of the medications that you use before taking Cimetidine to avoid drug interactions.
          Learn more
          More about PepcidSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
          More about TagametSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert