Apazol is a drug that contains an active substance called pantoprazole. It belongs to group of medicines called proton pump inhibitors, and it is used to treat gastric or duodenal ulcer, Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) as well as for eradication of Helicobacter pylori. Apazol works by blocking the proton pump and reduces the acid secretion in the stomach.
- Apazol must not be used in patients allergic to the active substance (pantoprazole) or other similar drugs, such as:
- omeprazole (Omeprol),
- lansoprazole, and others. If you are experiencing symptoms of an allergy, such as:
- skin rash,
- redness of the skin,
- swelling of the face,
- swelling of the tongue,
- difficulty breathing, contact your doctor immediately.
- It is necessary to exclude the possibility of the digestive tract tumor, before you start using this drug, because Apazol may mask the symptoms of a digestive tract tumor and hinder its detection.
- This drug must be used with extra precautions in patients with impaired hepatic or renal function.
- While using Apazol, you will need to periodically control the blood, because it can cause anemia due to reduced utilization of vitamin B12. Contact your doctor if you are experiencing symptoms of anemia, such as:
- pale skin,
- weakness and others.
- This medication increases the number of bacteria in the gut, and therefore increases the risk of intestinal infection.
- It should be used with extra precautions in patients with low blood levels of magnesium (hypomagnesaemia) and in patients with osteopenia (reduced bone density). Apazol increases the risk of bone fractures, especially if it is used for a longer period of time, particularly in the elderly patients (above the age of 65) and in postmenopausal women.
Use of Apazol during pregnancy and breastfeeding
Apazol should be used during pregnancy only if the benefit to the mother outweighs the risk to the child. Also avoid breastfeeding while using this drug because this drug passes into breast milk and may harm your baby.
- It should be used in the morning, half an hour before a meal.
- The usual dose for the treatment of GERD, gastric and duodenal ulcers is 40 mg once daily, in the morning, during 2-4 weeks. In the treatment of Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, the treatment may last longer.
- In the eradication of Helicobacter pylori, Apazol is used in a dose of 40 mg twice a day (in the morning and evening), during 7 days.
- In patients with liver damage, this medicine should be used at a dose of 40 mg every other day.
- There are no evidence of its safety in children under the age of 5.
- During the therapy with Apazol, it is recommended the simultaneous use of vitamin B12, since that Apazol can cause a lack of vitamin B12.
Use with other medicines (Interactions)
Apazol should be avoided or can be used only with extra precautions in combination with the following drugs:
- Drugs used to treat blood clotting disorders (i.e. anticoagulant drugs), such as:
- Diazepam (Bensedin), a drug used as a tranquilizer and to treat insomnia.
- Drugs used in the treatment of fungal infections, such as:
- fluconazole, and others. Apazol can reduce the effect of these drugs.
- Drugs used in the treatment of epilepsy, such as phenytoin.
- Iron preparations (Heferol, Ferrum) and others.
- Drugs used in the treatment of AIDS (HIV).
Tell your doctor about all medications and herbal you are taking.
Apazol may cause the following side effects:
- abdominal pain,
- weight loss,
- low levels of magnesium in the blood,
- flu-like symptoms (sore throat, cough, fever),
- kidney damage (the appearance of blood in the urine),
- allergy and others.
Tell your doctor if you are experiencing any side effects.