Relieves heartburn and acid tummy.
Our pharmacists’ bottom line
Tagamet (Cimetidine) works well for heartburn but may not last as long or start working as quickly as other antacids.
- 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.
- 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.
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Side effects for Tagamet (Cimetidine)
From clinical trials of Tagamet / GI ulcer
- Abnormally large breasts in malesAbnormally large breasts in males4% for Cimetidine vs.0% for placebo
- DiarrheaDiarrhea1% for Cimetidine vs.0% for placebo
Manufacturers don’t say how common these side effects are
- Decreased white blood cell counts
- Increase in plasma creatinine
- Increase in serum transaminase
- Mild rash
- Reversible confusional states
- Reversible impotence
What to expect when you start Tagamet (Cimetidine)Skip what to expect section. Skip to Risks & Warnings section.
- 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.
Risks and Warnings for Tagamet (Cimetidine)Skip Risks and Warnings section. Skip to Tips section.
Heartburn and feelings of upset stomach can be warning signs of a more serious stomach problem or cancer. If you need to take Tagamet (Cimetidine) 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.
Tips from pharmacists and people taking Tagamet (Cimetidine)Final section. Do you want to return to drug navigation?
- Tips from our pharmacists
- › People with kidney disease may need to take a lower dose.
- Risks from our pharmacists
- › 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.