Pepcid Complete is a combination medicine that contains famotidine, magnesium hydroxide, and calcium carbonate. It is available without a prescription and is commonly used to treat heartburn, GERD, and acid indigestion. The medications in the drug allow it to both block certain histamine receptors (which reduces the amount of acid the stomach produces) and relieve symptoms the excess acid causes.
What Is Pepcid Complete?
Pepcid Complete® is an over-the-counter medication used to treat heartburn, acid indigestion, and sour stomach in adults and children age 12 and up. It is a combination of the following medications:
(Click Pepcid Uses for more information on what the medication is used for, including possible off-label uses and uses for prescription-strength Pepcid®.)
How Does Pepcid Complete Work?
Pepcid Complete contains famotidine, an "H2 blocker" that works by blocking a specific kind of histamine receptor. Histamine is a chemical released by that body that has several effects. In the stomach, for example, it causes more acid to be produced. By blocking histamine in the stomach, famotidine reduces the amount of acid it produces. This is why famotidine is known as an "acid reducer" or "acid controller."
Pepcid Complete also contains two antacids: calcium carbonate (the active ingredient of products like Tums®) and magnesium hydroxide (the active ingredient of products like Phillips' Milk of Magnesia®). These products usually work more quickly than H2 blockers. The antacids provide quick relief, while the H2 blocker works longer (and is usually more effective).
Pepcid Web site. Available at: http://www.pepcid.com/. Accessed May 8, 2009.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed March 7, 2007.
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