Compare Tagamet vs. Rolaids

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

Tagamet
(cimetidine)

Rolaids
(calcium carbonate / magnesium hydroxide)

Treats heartburn. Tagamet (cimetidine) works well for heartburn, but may have more side effects than other medicines like it.Relieves heartburn and acid tummy. Rolaids (Calcium Carbonate / Magnesium Hydroxide) gives quick relief for heartburn, but don't expect it to last all day.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.64Tagamet
Reviews for Tagamet
63%
of people (All ages) say Tagamet is worth it
36%
say it works well
12%
say it's a big hassle
632 reviews
Have you used Tagamet (cimetidine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Rolaids
75%
-12% worse vs. Tagamet
37%
-1% worse vs. Tagamet
7%
-5% worse vs. Tagamet
1089 reviews
Have you used Rolaids (calcium carbonate / magnesium hydroxide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
TagametRolaids
  • Headache 2%
More Tagamet side effects »

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

FDA side effect reports for Rolaids »
How it works
TagametRolaids
Tagamet (cimetidine) reduces acid production in your stomach.Rolaids (Calcium Carbonate / Magnesium Hydroxide) is an antacid. It counteracts the effects of stomach acid to relieve heartburn and acid tummy (indigestion).
Type of medication
TagametRolaids
Prescription or OTCOver-the-counter
Available as
TagametRolaids
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Chewable tablet
  • Liquid
Used for
TagametRolaids
Risk factors for serious side effects
TagametRolaids
  • Elderly
  • Kidney problems
  • Liver problems
  • Dementia
  • Asthma
Detailed Tagamet (cimetidine) risks & warnings »
  • Current kidney disease
  • Kidney dialysis
  • Hyperparathyroid disease
  • Taking high doses of Vitamin D
  • Previous kidney stones
Detailed Rolaids (calcium carbonate / magnesium hydroxide) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

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.

Kidneys and liver
TagametRolaids
  • Tagamet (cimetidine) can cause confusion if you have kidney or liver problems, dementia, or if you are over 60 years old. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about alternative medicines if you have any of these conditions.
  • May not be the best option if you are elderly or have kidney or liver problems.
  • If you have kidney or hyperparathyroid disease Rolaids (Calcium Carbonate / Magnesium Hydroxide) can build up in your blood. This may can cause toxic levels of calcium 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 Rolaids (Calcium Carbonate / Magnesium Hydroxide); a different antacid would be better for you.
  • Rolaids (Calcium Carbonate / Magnesium Hydroxide) contains calcium. Calcium can be an ingredient in some kidney stones. If you have had kidney stones in the past (especially the calcium-containing kind) be careful using Rolaids (Calcium Carbonate / Magnesium Hydroxide). Use the lowest dose for the shortest time possible or just play it safe and use a different antacid instead.
  • People with kidney disease on dialysis may need to take a lower dose or avoid use. Your doctor can do blood tests to see if it's safe to use.
Upsides and benefits
TagametRolaids
  • Lasts longer than other medicines like it so you may not need to take it as frequently.
  • Affordable as an over-the-counter or generic medicine.
  • Works really fast.
  • Available over the counter without a prescription.
  • Cheap.
Downsides and risks
TagametRolaids
  • Does not work as fast as antacids like Maalox, Tums, or Rolaids.
  • May not work as well if you have an inflammed esophagus. Your doctor will assess which medicine is best for you.
  • May not be the best option if you are elderly or have kidney or liver problems.
  • Can interfere with how other medicines work.
  • Doesn't last very long.
  • Other antacids like Zantac (H2 blockers) and omeprazole (proton pump inhibitors) can work better and last longer.
  • Some chalky aftertaste.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
TagametRolaids
  • Take 30 minutes before eating for maximum heartburn relief.
  • Talk to your doctor if you don't see any improvement after 2 weeks.
  • Talk to your doctor if you end up using this medicine more than 2 times a week.
  • Let your doctor or pharmacist know about any other medicines or supplements that you are taking because Tagamet (cimetidine) can interfere with how a lot of other medicines work.
  • Take at the first sign of discomfort.
  • You might need to take more than once a day but pay attention to the instructions on your bottle to avoid overdosing.
  • Take 1-2 hours apart from other medication that you take by mouth.
  • If heartburn doesn't improve or lasts more than 2 weeks, talk to your doctor.
  • People with kidney disease on dialysis may need to take a lower dose or avoid use. Your doctor can do blood tests to see if it's safe to use.
  • Don't take if you have high blood calcium levels.
Learn more
More about TagametSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Tagamet (cimetidine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about RolaidsSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Rolaids (calcium carbonate / magnesium hydroxide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it