Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist June 2014 Contents Heartburn occurs when the acidic contents of the stomach
are regurgitated into the oesophagus, resulting in damage and
inflammation. This can cause a burning sensation behind the chest that
radiates from the upper abdomen towards the throat.1,3
Pain often presents within an hour of eating, coinciding with the release
of gastric juices that aid digestion, and can range from mild discomfort
to a sharp, fiery sensation. Pain is often worse on lying down or when
the intra-abdominal pressure increases.
Heartburn also has the potential to cause significant distress and
negatively impact quality of life. Sufferers report that heartburn can
affect their mood, sleeping habits, general well-being, and freedom to
eat or drink what and when they want.3
What treatments are available?
Dietary and lifestyle modifications are considered first-line treatment
options for managing heartburn. If these prove ineffective, mild
intermittent or episodic heartburn can be treated with antacids,
alginates or H2-antagonists.3
Antacids and alginates
Antacids work quickly to neutralise stomach acid but do not reduce the
amount of acid being produced. When taken 1–3 hours after meals they
can provide fast but short-lived symptom relief. This results in a dose
needing to be taken each time symptoms of heartburn occur.
Alginates react with acidic gastric juices to produce a viscous, gel-like
raft which floats on the surface of the stomach contents.6 This creates
a physical barrier, preventing stomach acid from being refluxed into the
oesophagus. Like antacids, alginates provide fast relief of symptoms, but
the raft only remains intact for 3–4 hours, making repeat dosing necessary.
Zantac tames heartburn differently
Rather than temporarily blocking or neutralising stomach acid, Zantac
(ranitidine) controls acid production by competitively blocking the
H2-receptors on the parietal cells of the stomach.8 The reduction in gastric
acid secretion results in a decrease in acid volume and an increase in the
pH of the stomach contents.
Zantac is a first-line treatment option for those experiencing mild,
intermittent symptoms of GORD (such as heartburn) in whom lifestyle and
dietary modifications have proven ineffective.9 A single Zantac tablet can
provide symptomatic relief in as little as 30 minutes that can last for up to
24 hours.5 When taken prior to a meal or exposure to a known trigger
(see Table 1), Zantac is also effective in preventing postprandial heartburn.5
Zantac is one of Australia’s leading heartburn brands and has been an
established name for more than 30 years.10 The long-lasting effect of
Zantac makes it an ideal choice for symptom relief and prevention.
Assess patient’s symptoms
Lifestyle and dietary modifications
(≤1 day per week)
Antacid or H2RA
(≥2 days per week)
Refer for further
References: 1. Sigterman KE, et al. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2013, Issue 5. Art. No.: CD002095. 2. Pappa KA, et al. Aliment Pharmacol Ther 1999;13:467–73. 3. Fennerty M, et
al. J Fam Pract 2009;58(Suppl):S1–12 . 4. Sansom LN, ed. Australian pharmaceutical formulary and handbook. 22nd edn. Canberra: Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, 2012. 5. Fock KM, et al.
J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2008;23:8–22 . 6. Dettmar PW, et al. Int J Clin Prac 2006;60:275–83 . 7. Mandel KG, et al. Aliment Pharmacol Ther 2000;14:669–90. 8. Rossi S, (ed), Australian Medicines
Handbook 2013. Adelaide: Australian Medicines Handbook Pty Ltd; 2011:479–81. 9. Mild intermittent symptoms of gastro-oesophageal reflux [revised 2011 Feb]. In: eTG complete [Internet]. Melbourne:
Therapeutic Guidelines Limited; 2013 Mar. Available at online.tg.org.au/complete/desktop/index.htm Accessed 2014 Feb 20. 10. IMS MAT May 2013.
Zantac® is a registered trademark of Aspen Global Incorporated. Distributed by Aspen Pharmacare Australia Pty Ltd 34–36 Chandos Street, St Leonards
NSW 2065. ASPEZ0001/ADVERT. May 2014.
Putting acid in its place: Zantac® for long-lasting relief
Up to 25% of Australian adults experience heartburn regularly, with the majority treating the fiery pain
with non-prescription medication.
So how can you help your customers tame their heartburn?
• Relieves the pain and discomfort of
heartburn for up to 24 hours
• Works in as little as 30 minutes5
• Convenient and easy to take tablets
Zantac brings acid down for
long-lasting relief 5
Why does it trigger heartburn?
• Chocolate, peppermint, spearmint
• Lying down after eating
Relaxes the lower oesophageal
sphincter and allows increased reflux
of the stomach contents into the
• Fatty foods
Slows down gastric empting and
stomach contents stay longer
• Coffee, spicy foods, onions, citrus
fruits, tomato based food
Irritation to the oesophageal mucosa
Table 1. Common heartburn triggers2,4
Figure 1: Management of acute heartburn
Adapted from Fennerty MB, et al. 2009.3
ASPEZ0001_AP_ADVERT - 1 2014- 05- 07T15: 21: 42+10: 00
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