What is Cimetidine?    

  • Cimetidine is a generic form of Tagamet.
  • Cimetidine drug is a histamine H2 receptor antagonist that inhibits stomach acid production.
  • This medicine is available over-the-counter and is mainly used in the treatment of heartburn and peptic ulcers.
  • Cimetidine is an effective medicine to reduce the amount of acid produced in the stomach.
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Uses of Cimetidine

Cimetidine is prescribed for:

  • Duodenal Ulcer
  • Gastric Ulcer
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
  • Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome
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How does Cimetidine work?

Cimetidine medicine works by blocking histamine at a specific site in the stomach which results in inhibition of acid secretion and lowered gastric acidity.

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How to take Cimetidine?

  • Cimetidine is administered orally in the form of tablet or liquid, to be taken two to four times a day.
  • Cimetidine should be taken 30 minutes before food to relieve symptoms of heartburn.
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Common dosage of Cimetidine

  • Dose for duodenal ulcers range from 800 to 1600 mg t be taken at bedtime or 300 mg 4 times a day at meal times and bedtime, or 400 mg twice a day for 4-6 weeks.
  • For active gastric ulcers, 800 mg at bedtime or 300 mg 4 times a day at meal times and bedtime for up to 8 weeks.
  • Dose for GERD is 800 mg twice a day or 400 mg 4 times a day for 12 weeks.
  • Heartburn, indigestion or sour stomach may be treated with 200 mg once or twice daily and may be administered up to 30 minutes before ingestion of food or beverages that may cause heartburn.

When to avoid Cimetidine & Precautions to take?

  • Avoid using Cimetidine if you are allergic to it or any other inactive ingredients present along with it.
  • Use of Cimetidine is not recommended for use in case of gastro-intestinal bleeding.
  • Cimetidine should be used with caution in patients with the kidney injury due to the risk of interstitial nephritis and urinary retention.
  • This drug is recommended for children less than 16 years only if benefits overweigh the risks.
  • Caution is advised in patients with liver disease.
  • Cimetidine may relieve the symptoms of gastric cancer but do not treat the condition.

Side Effects of Cimetidine

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea
  • Gynecomastia
  • Decrease in blood cell count
  • Skin rash
  • Muscle pain
  • Sleepiness
  • Joint pain
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Effect on organs?

  • Nervous system reactions- Headache, dizziness, somnolence, depression, agitation, disorientation, confusion, delirium, unsteadiness, slurred speech, lethargy, hallucinations, and coma.
  • Psychiatric reactions- Unsteadiness, slurred speech, and lethargy, severe depression, suicidal ideation, paranoia, and frank psychosis.
  • Endocrine reactions- Gynecomastia, galactorrhea, impotence, and transient alopecia.
  • Cardiovascular reactions- Tachycardia, bradycardia, hypotension, QT interval prolongation, premature ventricular contractions, junctional rhythm, AV block, and sinus arrest.
  • Hematologic reactions- Leukopenia, eosinophilia, neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, agranulocytosis, and aplastic anemia.
  • Hepatic reactions- Elevations in liver function tests and hepatitis of both cholestatic and mixed cholestatic-hepatocellular types.
  • Renal reactions- Elevations in serum creatinine.
  • Dermatologic reactions- Mild rash, dry skin, seborrheic dermatitis, erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, exfoliative dermatitis, and toxic epidermal necrolysis.

 Reported allergic reactions?

Allergic reactions may include:

  • Rash
  • Itching
  • Trouble breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Swelling of face, throat, hands/legs

Drug interactions to be careful about?

  • Glipizide
  • Loperamide
  • Phenytoin
  • Antifungal agents

Shows effects

  • The effect of cimetidine can be observed in less than 1 hour after an oral dose and less than 30 minutes after an intravenous dose.
  • Average duration up to which the effectiveness of this drug lasts is 4 to 5 hours after an intravenous dose and 4 to 8 hours after an oral dose.

 Storage Requirements for Cimetidine

  • Keep it in an air-tight container.
  • Keep it away from direct light or moisture.
  • Keep it out of reach of children.

Pro Tips when taking Cimetidine

Minor interaction is possible while consuming alcohol while receiving Cimetidine. However symptoms like dizziness, breathing difficulty should be reported to the doctor.


Is Cimetidine addictive?


Can I have Cimetidine with alcohol?


Any particular food item to be avoided?


Can I have Cimetidine when pregnant?

Yes; only if benefit outweigh the risks.

Can I have Cimetidine when feeding a baby?


Can I drive after taking Cimetidine?


What happens if I overdose on Cimetidine?

Overdose of cimetidine may cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, confusion, extreme weakness, or fainting.

What happens if I eat expired Cimetidine?

Expired Cimetidine may become ineffective in treating your prescribed conditions, thus to be on the safe side, it is important not to use expired drug.

What happens if I miss a dose of Cimetidine?

If you miss a dose of Cimetidine, skip it and continue with your normal schedule. Do not double dose for a missed one.


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