Prescription or OTCLower-cost generic availableClass: Gastrointestinal

Nexium

(esomeprazole)

Prescription or OTCLower-cost generic availableClass: Gastrointestinal
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Treats heartburn and stomach ulcers.

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Our bottom line

Nexium (Esomeprazole) gives you long-lasting heartburn relief. But this purple pill ain't cheap! The generic forms of alternative drugs work just as well, and are usually less expensive.

Price and discounts
Prices and coupon for 30 (40mg) capsules of esomeprazole

Upsides

  • Most people can take Nexium without any noticeable day-to-day side effects.
  • Nexium lasts longer than other types of antacids (like Zantac, Pepcid, or 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.
  • In studies it was better than a placebo (sugar pill) and as good as other proton pump inhibitors at treating heartburn.
  • Available as both a generic and over-the-counter option, so it's pretty affordable.
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Downsides

  • Doesn't start working as fast as some other antacids like Tums, Rolaids, or Maalox.
  • Like with other proton pump inhibitors, long-term use can cause weak or broken bones.
  • Can cause low levels of magnesium in the blood. You might need to take a magnesium supplement if you use Nexium long-term.
  • Can be expensive—especially the purple brand-name pill. Other alternatives are usually cheaper than Nexium and work just as well.
  • Can interact with other drugs so be sure your doctor knows all the medicine you're taking before starting Nexium.
How it works

Nexium (Esomeprazole) is a proton pump inhibitor (PPI). It lowers the amount of acid in your stomach, treats heartburn, and heals ulcers.

What to expect when you take Nexium (esomeprazole) for Reduces stomach acid

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Side effect rates for Nexium (esomeprazole)

  • Diarrhea
  • Change in taste
  • Abdominal pain

Risks and Warnings for Nexium (esomeprazole)

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  • Heartburn and feelings of upset stomach can be warning signs of a more serious stomach problem or cancer. If you need to take Nexium (Esomeprazole) for 2 weeks or more go see a doctor. It's safest to get checked out to make sure you do not have a serious stomach condition.

Common concerns from people taking Nexium (esomeprazole)

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Pregnancy
Interactions
  • Can interact with other drugs so be sure your doctor knows all the medicine you're taking before starting Nexium.
  • Avoid drug interactions by telling your doctor all of the other medications or herbal supplements you take before starting Nexium.
Food
  • Take 1 hour before a meal.