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By Jennica Mae V. Cuico

Omeprazole (INN) ( /omprzol/) (Prilosec and generics) is a proton pump inhibitorused in the treatment of dyspepsia, peptic ulcer disease (PUD), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GORD/GERD), laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) and ZollingerEllison syndrome.

Mechanism of Action Omeprazole is a proton pump inhibitor that suppresses gastric acid secretion by specific inhibition of the H+/K+-ATPase in the gastric parietal cell. By acting specifically on the proton pump, omeprazole blocks the final step in acid production, thus reducing gastric acidity.[4]

What are the possible side effects of omeprazole (Prilosec, Prilosec OTC)? Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Other less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as: stomach pain, gas; nausea, vomiting, diarrhea; or headache.

Prescription Omeprazole Dosing See below for the recommended dosages for the prescription version of omeprazole. Omeprazole Dosage for Helicobacter Pylori Infections There are two different regimens for treating H. pylori infections. The triple therapy regimen consists of the following medications taken for 10 days (or for 28 days in people who currently have a duodenal ulcer): Omeprazole 20 mg twice daily Clarithromycin (Biaxin) 500 mg twice daily Amoxicillin (Amoxil) 1000 mg twice daily. The dual therapy regimen consists of the following medications taken for 14 days (or for 28 days for people who currently have a duodenal ulcer): Omeprazole 40 mg once daily Clarithromycin (Biaxin) 500 mg three times daily. Omeprazole Dosing for Duodenal Ulcers The recommended dosage of omeprazole for duodenal ulcer treatment is omeprazole 20 mg for four to eight weeks.

Omeprazole Dose for Gastric Ulcers The recommended omeprazole dose for stomach ulcers (gastric ulcers) is omeprazole 40 mg once daily for four to eight weeks. Omeprazole Dosage for GERD and Erosive Esophagitis The recommended omeprazole dose for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is omeprazole 20 mg once daily for up to four weeks. For people with GERD and erosive esophagitis, the recommended dose is omeprazole 20 mg for four to eight weeks. Omeprazole can be continued if needed to prevent erosive esophagitis from returning. Omeprazole Dose for Pathological Hypersecretory Conditions People with pathological hypersecretory conditions (such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome) usually require higher omeprazole dosages. The recommended dose is omeprazole 60 mg once daily, although some people may need even higher doses. Doses of omeprazole larger than 80 mg should be split up into two or three smaller doses per day. Omeprazole Dose for Children The recommended dosage of omeprazole for children depends upon the weight of the child as follows: Between 5 and 10 kg (11 to 22 pounds) -- omeprazole 5 mg once daily Between 10 and 20 kg (22 to 44 pounds) -- omeprazole 10 mg once daily 20 kg or more (44 pounds or more) -- omeprazole 20 mg once daily.

Some considerations for people taking omeprazole include the following: Omeprazole comes in capsule form or as packets used to mix an oral suspension (liquid). It is taken by mouth once or twice a day. Nonprescription omeprazole comes in tablet and capsule form. Omeprazole is best taken on an empty stomach, half an hour before a meal. Omeprazole capsules should not be chewed or crushed, as they contain tiny granules with a special coating that prevents stomach acid from destroying the medication. Nonprescription omeprazole tablets should not be cut, crushed, or chewed. For people who have difficulty swallowing capsules, Omeprazole capsules (but not tablets) can be opened and the contents sprinkled onto a spoonful of applesauce. The applesauce should not be hot and should be swallowed (without chewing) immediately. For the oral suspension, the contents of one packet are mixed with a certain amount of water (which varies, depending on the strength), left to sit for two or three minutes to thicken, and taken within 30 minutes. Rinse out the container with a small amount of water and drink the contents if any of the drug remains. Omeprazole should be taken at the same time(s) each day to maintain an even level of the medication in your blood. For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. Omeprazole will not work if you stop taking it. If you are unsure about anything related to omeprazole or your omeprazole dosage, talk to your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist. Do not stop taking the drug without discussing it with your healthcare provider.