Protonix is a proton pump inhibitor medication used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD. Proton pump inhibitors reduce the production of stomach acid in order to reduce the amount of acid that can flow back into the esophagus. The generic name for Protonix is pantoprazole.
In addition to treating GERD, Protonix may also be prescribed for patients with Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, a disorder in which the stomach produces too much acid.
Protonix is generally prescribed to be taken once or twice per day and it’s recommended that you take it at the same time every day. This medication does not have to be taken with food or a certain amount of time before eating. The tablets should be taken whole and not crushed or chewed.
Is Protonix safe?
While pantoprazole is safe for most people to take as directed, you should talk to your doctor if you are allergic to pantoprazole or similar medications. You should also discuss any medications you may be taking, especially if you are taking: ampicillin (Omnipen, Polycillin, Totacillin), clopidogrel (Plavix), ketoconazole (Nizoral), or vitamins containing iron. As with all medications, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Side effects that may be caused by Protonix include diarrhea, headache, stomach pain, gas or bloating. You should call your doctors if these symptoms do not go away.