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Home / Acid Reflux / Nexium (esomeprazole)

Nexium (esomeprazole)

Dr. Sarah Donald
Dr. Sarah Donald Clinical Lead

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What is Nexium?

Nexium is a medication that reduces the amount of acid produced in the stomach. It is also available as a generic medication, going by the name of its active ingredient, esomeprazole.

It is used to effectively treat several conditions relating to the overproduction of acid, including:

  • gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • ulcers caused by long-term use of NSAIDs
  • Zollinger-Ellison syndrome
  • (alongside antibiotics) bacterial infections in the intestine or stomach

In addition to treating the above conditions, Nexium also eases many of their symptoms, such as heartburn.

How does Nexium work?

Nexium contains the active ingredient esomeprazole - a type of medicine known as a proton pump inhibitor.

The cells lining the stomach contain proton pumps, which work to produce the stomach acid that is an essential part of the body's digestive process. Esomeprazole inhibits the action of these proton pumps, reducing acid production and preventing the overflow into the oesophagus (food pipe).

This alleviates symptoms such as heartburn, burning sensations in the throat and unpleasant tastes.

How do I use Nexium?

Nexium (esomeprazole) is available from HealthExpress as 40mg tablets.

A full list of instructions will be detailed in your patient leaflet, however, a summary is below:

  • your doctor will tell you how many tablets to take
  • always take this medicine exactly as advised by your doctor
  • tablets can be taken with food or on an empty stomach
  • do not chew or crush your tablets
  • swallow your tablets whole with a glass of water
  • if you have difficulty swallowing tablets, add them to a glass of water and stir until they begin to break up. Drink this mixture either immediately or within 30 minutes

What are the possible side effects?

Side effects that have been commonly reported include:

  • flatulence
  • gut disturbances, such as constipation
  • diarrhoea
  • nausea
  • abdominal pain
  • headache

If you find any of the above distressing or long-lasting, you should consult your doctor.

You should stop treatment immediately and seek immediate medical help if you suspect you are suffering an allergic reaction.

What precautions should I take?

This medicine is only available with a valid prescription from your doctor. You must not share your medicine, and it should only be used to treat a diagnosed condition.

Nexium may interact with some other medicines. You should inform your doctor of all treatments you are currently taking and have taken in the past. You should also detail these in your HealthExpress consultation.

If you are taking anti-HIV medicines, such as rilpivirine or nelfinavir, you should not start a course of Nexium. This is because the esomeprazole in the tablets can decrease the effectiveness of anti-HIV drugs.

As Nexium contains sucrose, you must not take them if you have sucrase-isomaltase insufficiency, glucose-galactose malabsorption, or other rare hereditary problems of fructose intolerance.

This medicine should be used with caution if you have severely decreased liver or kidney function, osteoporosis or a vitamin B12 deficiency.

Taking a proton pump inhibitor medicine for more than 3 months can cause blood levels of magnesium to fall, which can lead to muscle twitching, dizziness, fatigue and increased heart rate. If you experience any of these symptoms, tell your doctor, as they may need to monitor your magnesium levels.

If you are pregnant, planning a pregnancy or a nursing mother, you should consult your doctor before starting this treatment.

You should not take Nexium if you are allergic to esomeprazole, proton pump inhibitors or any of its other ingredients.

How does HealthExpress' service work?

You can buy prescription medication from HealthExpress once you have completed an online consultation. You should detail your medical history, including any treatments you have previously taken/are taking. Our doctors will use this information to determine whether this medication is suitable for your use.

We offer free next-day delivery and nominated-day delivery, so you can choose when and where you want your order delivered.

Treatment Information
Treatment Information
Product Name: Nexium (Esomeprazole)
Active Ingredient(s): Esomeprazole
Manufacturer: AstraZeneca
Description: Nexium is a medication prescribed for the relief of symptoms of acid reflux
Exemption: Subject to medical prescription
Administration: Oral
Presentation: Tablets
Available Dosage: 40 mg
Application: Adults suffering from acid reflux
Posology: Consult patient leaflet
Drug class: Proton-pump inhibitor
Alcohol consumption: Avoid alcohol consumption
When breastfeeding: Not recommended, ask your doctor for alternatives
When pregnant: Not recommended, ask your doctor for alternatives
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