Short term treatment of active ulcer, GERD, treatment of heartburn, indigestion,
management of Zollinger Ellison syndrome, prevention of GI bleeding in critically
ill patients, management of symptoms associated with overuse of NSAIDs
Blocks action of histamine located in gastric parietal cells, inhibits gastric acid
Histamine H2 antagonist
• May cause arrhythmias, agranulocytosis, aplastic anemias
• Assess for abdominal pain and occult blood
• Monitor CBC
• Instruct pt to increase fluid and fiber intake to prevent constipation
Okay, let’s talk about, Famotidine also known as Pepcid. This is an oral medication, as you can see here in the picture, but it also comes in an IV form. The therapeutic class of Famotidine is an ant ulcer agent. While the pharmacologic class is a histamine H-2 antagonist. Remember the therapeutic class is how the drug works in the body while the pharmacologic class is the chemical effect. So Famotidine works by blocking the action of histamine located in gastric parietal cells, which inhibits gastric acid secretion. This is exactly what we want as Famotidine is indicated for the short-term treatment of active ulcers, GERD, heartburn, indigestion, the management of Zollinger Ellison syndrome, the prevention of GI bleeding specifically in critically ill patients, and also the management of symptoms associated with the overuse of NSAIDs. The most commonly reported side effects that are seen with Famotidine are headache, dizziness, constipation, and diarrhea.
So let’s take a look at a few nursing considerations for Famotidine. Be sure to assess your patient for abdominal pain, as well as occult blood in the stool, as this is a sign of a worsening ulcer during therapy. Monitor your patient’s CBC as Famotidine may cause agranulocytosis and aplastic anemia. The patient is also at risk for arrhythmias. Be sure to teach the patient to increase fluid as well as fiber to decrease the risk of constipation. So guys, in comparison to Cimetidine, which is another anti-ulcer agent, Famotidine actually has almost no drug interactions as compared to Cimetidine, which is why it may be a preferred medication. That’s it for Famotidine or Pepcid. Now go out and be your best self today and as always happy nursing.