My Symptoms

Heartburn: Treatments

There are two main types of heartburn treatment: antacids and antisecretory drugs.

1 - The antacids

These are the type of medication Maalox®, Gaviscon®, Rennie® ... that soothe almost immediately when taken. Antacids have the effect of neutralizing excess acid. In fact, a chemical reaction will take place, and will balance the pH of the stomach.

In this case, stomach acid being a hydrochloric acid, the antacid usually contains magnesium or aluminum, metals that compensate for acidity. They form a sort of gelatinous layer on the gastric wall and thus protect against acidity. It is always possible to have a small package in the pocket. It can always be used. But the ideal is to have to take it occasionally. If you are forced to absorb several times a day, every day, to keep up, better to consider a more effective treatment.

2 - Anti-Secretaries

This is the other way to treat heartburn. Anti-secretory agents are products whose role is to inhibit the secretion of hydrochloric acid, either by blocking the enzyme responsible for acid secretion, or by blocking the membrane receptors.

There are two types of anti-secretory:

  • anti-secretory anti-H2, those that block histamine H2 membrane receptors,
  • the anti-secretory agents IPP (proton pump inhibitors).

> H2 blockers

H2 blockers are of moderate intensity. Inhibition of acid secretion is mainly due to basal secretion. Their action lasts about six hours. However, if we consume them with too much regularity and frequency, their effects tend to diminish: we become accustomed to them.

> PPIs

PPIs have a powerful antisecretory action with a long duration of action. They maintain the gastric pH above 4 for 10 to 14 hours. On the other hand, they poorly control night acidity.

At the moment, it seems that PPIs are preferred over H2 blockers. In the past, these drugs were reserved for medical prescription. They can now be used for self-medication with the help of the pharmacist. This drug is Pantozol Control®. Taken in self-medication, it is not reimbursed by the Health Insurance.

But beware, this purchase of medication must be supervised by the pharmacist. Indeed, this treatment can only be used under certain conditions:

  • gastric burns are associated with acid reflux,
  • symptoms appear more than once a week,
  • we are under 60,
  • there is no loss of weight, no discomfort with swallowing, no vomiting associated.

The treatment should not be given in cases of ulcers, for example. The pharmacist will have the task of monitoring your weight and the effect of the drug on your symptoms. He was trained for this. The burn relief must be obtained in two days and be total in one week.

The drug is supposed to work nine times out of ten. If the symptoms do not regress within this time, it is imperative to consult the doctor.

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