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H2 inhibitors such as famotidine are not the only drug that treats heartburn, ulcers, GERD, and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. 

Potential Alternatives for Famotidine

Proton Pump Inhibitors

Proton pump inhibitors include omeprazole (Prilosec), esomeprazole (Nexium), pantoprazole (Protonix), and lansoprazole (Prevacid). They suppress stomach acid secretion by inhibition of the enzyme found in the stomach wall that produces acid.


Antacids drugs include Maalox, Mylanta, and Tums. These medicines are used for quick relief of symptoms and are readily available over the counter.

Other H2 receptors antagonists

Other H2 inhibitors are ranitidine (Zantac) and cimetidine (Tagamet). These drugs have similar effects but may have different side effects than famotidine.

Non-medical alternatives

Non-medical alternatives that you can talk to your doctor about include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Melatonin
  • Hypnotherapy (clinical hypnosis)
  • Herbal remedies, such as chamomile, ginger root, marshmallow root
  • Baking soda
  • Chewing gum
  • Aloe juice
  • Almonds

However, scientific research on how effective these alternatives are is scarce. Anyone considering these options should consult with their doctor first.

Lifestyle changes

Lifestyle changes can help, too. These changes may include:

  • Quitting smoking
  • Exercising regularly
  • Sleeping on the left side
  • Elevating the head and upper body while in bed
  • Wearing loose-fitting clothing
  • Eating smaller meals more often
  • Drinking less alcohol
  • Avoiding triggers

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.

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