Managing heartburn at the 'base' of the GERD 'iceberg': effervescent ranitidine 150 mg b.d. provides faster and better heartburn relief than antacids.Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2000 Jul; 14(7):911-8.AP
Many individuals with heartburn self-medicate with antacids for relief of their symptoms.
To compare efficacy of effervescent ranitidine to as-needed calcium carbonate antacids in subjects who self-treat heartburn.
A total of 155 subjects with frequent antacid-responsive heartburn were randomized to receive effervescent ranitidine 150 mg tablets b.d., or as-needed calcium carbonate 750 mg for 12 weeks. Endoscopic oesophagitis severity and mucosal histology were assessed at baseline, and at weeks 6 and 12. Heartburn frequency, severity, and antacid consumption were recorded daily, and quality of life was assessed at baseline, and at weeks 6 and 12.
Heartburn frequency and severity were significantly decreased after 1 day of ranitidine (P < 0.02). By week 6, ranitidine had significantly decreased rescue antacid consumption (7.3 tablets, P < 0.001) vs. antacids (14.1 tablets). Endoscopic oesophagitis healing (</= grade 1) was significantly better with ranitidine (55%, P=0.022) vs. antacids (29%). Quality of life was improved by both treatments; however, ranitidine was numerically superior for all quality of life parameters, statistically superior for several quality of life indices at week 6 and for the pain-related index by week 12 (P < 0. 05).
For subjects self-administering antacids for chronic heartburn, effervescent ranitidine 150 mg b.d. is more effective than antacids in reducing heartburn, healing erosive oesophagitis, alleviating pain, and improving quality of life.