Medications for Infants With GERD

Treating GERD in Infants With Medication

When a child is uncomfortable, has difficulty sleeping or eating, or is not growing, your healthcare provider may suggest a medication. Many different types of medicine can be used for treating infants with GERD. These most commonly include a medicine from one of two classes: proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) or H2 blockers.
Proton Pump Inhibitors
One class of medication for infant GERD treatment is proton pump inhibitors, or PPIs. There are several types:
Prevacid has been approved to treat GERD and erosive esophagitis in children one year of age and older. Prilosec has been approved to treat GERD and erosive esophagitis in children two years of age or older. Your healthcare provider may prescribe another PPI in an off-label fashion, which means the drug is being used in infants even though it is not approved for this use.
Nonprescription PPIs (including Prilosec OTC®, Prevacid® 24HR, or Zegerid OTC™) are not appropriate for infants, since they come only in tablet or capsule form.
H2 Blockers
Another class of medications used for treating GERD in infants is called histamine receptor antagonists, or H2 blockers. These lower the level of acid produced by the stomach. H2 blockers can be used to safely control the symptoms of GERD in many infants. Examples of this type of medication include:
Although a number of these are available without a prescription, you should not give these to your child without first talking to your healthcare provider.
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