Aciphex to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)

Rabeprazole sodium blocks acid production in the stomach. It is prescribed for the short-term (4 to 8 weeks) treatment of sores and inflammation in the upper digestive canal (esophagus). This condition, known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), is caused by the backflow of stomach acid into the esophagus over a prolonged period of time. Because GERD can be chronic, your doctor may continue to prescribe Rabeprazole sodium to prevent a relapse after your initial course of treatment.

Rabeprazole sodium can also be prescribed for the short-term (up to 4 weeks) treatment of duodenal ulcers (ulcers that form just outside the stomach at the top of the small intestine), and for Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, a disease which causes the stomach to produce too much acid. The drug is classified as a “proton pump inhibitor.” It works by blocking a specific enzyme essential to the production of stomach acid. It begins reducing acid within an hour of administration.


Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) The usual dose is 20 milligrams once a day for 4 to 8 weeks. For patients who have not healed after 8 weeks, the doctor may prescribe an additional 8-week course of Pariet therapy.

To Prevent a Relapse of GERD The usual dose is 20 milligrams once a day.

Duodenal Ulcer The usual dose is 20 milligrams taken once daily after the morning meal for a period of up to 4 weeks. Some people may require an additional 4 weeks of treatment.

Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome The usual starting dose is 60 milligrams once a day, although your doctor may adjust the dose based on your individual need. Doses of up to 100 milligrams once a day or 60 milligrams twice a day are sometimes prescribed.

Why is this Aciphex medication prescribed?

Aciphex/Rabeprazole is used to treat conditions where the stomach produces too much acid, including ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Aciphex/Rabeprazole is used in combination with other medications.

How should Aciphex be used?

Aciphex/Rabeprazole comes as a delayed-release (long-acting) tablet to take by mouth. Aciphex is usually taken once a day for 4 to 8 weeks, but Aciphex is sometimes taken for a longer time. When taken for ulcers, Aciphex/rabeprazole should be taken after the morning meal.

Swallow the Aciphex tablets whole; do not split, chew, or crush them.

What special Aciphex precautions should I follow?

Before taking Aciphex/rabeprazole,

tell your doctor and Aciphex pharmacist if you are allergic to rabeprazole, lansoprazole (Prevacid), omeprazole (Prilosec), pantoprazole (Protonix), or any other medications.

tell your doctor and Aciphex pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking. Be sure to mention any of the following: cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune), digoxin (Lanoxin), and ketoconazole (Nizoral). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for Aciphex side effects.

tell your doctor if you have or have ever had liver disease.

tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking Aciphex/rabeprazole, call your doctor.

What side effects can Aciphex cause?

Aciphex/Rabeprazole may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if these Aciphex symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • headache
  • upset stomach
  • diarrhea
  • stomach pain
  • vomiting
  • constipation
  • dry mouth
  • increased or decreased appetite
  • muscle or bone pain
  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep

There may be other side effects from Aciphex/rabeprazole. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this Aciphex medication.

What other Aciphex information should I know?

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain lab tests before and during treatment to check your response to Aciphex.

Do not let anyone else take your Aciphex medication. Ask your Aciphex pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your Aciphex prescription.

Other uses for this Aciphex medicine

This Aciphex medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more Aciphex information.

What storage conditions are needed for Aciphex?

Keep Aciphex in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store Aciphex at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any Aciphex medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your Aciphex medication.

What should I do if I forget a Aciphex dose?

Take the missed Aciphex dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next Aciphex dose, skip the missed Aciphex dose and continue your regular Aciphex dosing schedule. Do not take a double Aciphex dose to make up for a missed one.