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The term "antacid" is used to describe certain compounds that directly neutralize stomach acid. Tums, Maalox Advanced Regular Strength, and Mylanta all fall into this category. The active ingredients in most antacids are various forms of calcium, magnesium, and aluminum. Antacids are useful mostly for symptomatic relief of uncomfortable "acid stomach" and also may be helpful for heartburn.Many antacids are available today, including

  • Aluminum carbonate (Basaljel)
  • Aluminum hydroxide (ALternaGEL, Alu-Cap, Alu-Tab, Amphojel, Dialume, Nephrox)
  • Aluminum hydroxide/magnesium carbonate (Duracid)
  • Aluminum hydroxide/magnesium hydroxide (Alamag, Almacone, Aludrox, Gaviscon Liquid, Gelusil, Kudrox, Maalox Advanced Regular Strength, Magalox, Mintox, Mylanta, Rulox)
  • Aluminum hydroxide/magnesium hydroxide/calcium carbonate (Tempo)
  • Aluminum hydroxide/magnesium trisilicate (Alenic Alka, Gaviscon, Genaton, Foamicon)
  • Calcium carbonate (Alkets, Amitone, Chooz, Equilet, Gas-Ban, Mallamint, Mylanta Lozenges, Titralac, Tums)
  • Calcium carbonate/magnesium carbonate (Marblen, Mi-Acid Gelcaps, Mylanta Gelcaps, Mylagen Gelcaps)
  • Magnesium hydroxide (Milk of Magnesia, Phillips' Chewable)
  • Magaldrate or aluminum magnesium hydroxide sulfate (Iosopan, Riopan)
  • Magnesium oxide (Mag-Ox, Maox, Uro-Mag)
  • Sodium bicarbonate (Bell/ans, Bromo Seltzer)
  • Sodium citrate (Citra pH)
Other drugs work by reducing the stomach's production of acid. These are discussed separately in the articles on H 2 Blockers (eg, Zantac [ranitidine], Axid [nizatidine], Tagamet [cimetidine], Pepcid [famotidine]) and Proton Pump Inhibitors (Prilosec [omeprazole], Prevacid [lansoprazole]). These drugs produce a more powerful effect than antacids and are used for ulcers as well as for the treatment of esophageal reflux, commonly known as heartburn.

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