Getting the most from your treatment
- Try to keep your regular appointments with your doctor. This is so your progress can be checked. If you are taking Helicol on a long-term basis your doctor will want to review your treatment at least once a year to make sure it is still right for you.
- Typical courses of treatment last for one or two weeks if you are taking Helicol for Helicobacter pylori eradication. If you are taking it for acid-related dyspepsia, your treatment will typically last for two to four weeks. It will last for around one or two months if it is for an ulcer. For acid reflux or Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, your treatment will last for as long as is necessary to control your symptoms.
- Some foods may make your symptoms worse. Foods and drinks that have been suspected of this include peppermint, tomatoes, chocolate, spicy foods, hot drinks, coffee, and alcoholic drinks. If it seems that a food is aggravating your symptoms, try avoiding it for a while to see if your symptoms improve. Also, try avoiding eating large meals, as these can make your symptoms worse too.
- If you are overweight, it puts extra pressure on your stomach and encourages the symptoms of acid reflux. Losing some weight and eating a healthy balanced diet may help you.
- Smoking increases the amount of acid produced by the stomach and may make your symptoms worse. If you are a smoker, speak with your doctor or pharmacist about how to quit.
- Recent studies suggest that there may be a slight increase in the risk of bone fractures when proton pump inhibitors like Helicol are taken for longer than a year. If this affects you, your doctor will check that you are taking enough vitamin D and calcium to reduce this risk.
- If you buy any medicines 'over-the-counter', always check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take alongside your other medicines.
Will my dose go up or down?
Sometimes your doctor will increase your dose of Helicol if it isn't working well enough. Depending on the reason you take Helicol, you may take a higher dose to begin with, usually for a month or two. After this, your doctor may recommend that you take a lower dose.
Mixing Helicol with herbal remedies and supplements
Do not take St John's wort, the herbal remedy for depression, while you're taking Helicol. St John's wort may stop Helicol working as well as it should.
What is the dosage for Helicol?
For initial treatment of duodenal ulcers the recommended dose for adults is 15 mg daily for 4 weeks.
For the treatment of GERD, the recommended initial treatment is 15 mg for up to 8 weeks.
For maintaining healing (long-term) in duodenal ulcer and GERD the recommended treatment is 15 mg daily.
For initial treatment of severe (erosive) esophagitis and gastric ulcer, the recommended dose for adults is 30 mg daily for 4-8 weeks.
For the management of Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, the starting dose for adults is 60 mg daily, and the dose is adjusted based on response. Doses up to 180 mg have been used in some patients with Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.
Intravenous Helicol is approved for patients who are unable to take oral Helicol. The approved intravenous dose is 30 mg daily for up to 7 days.
It is recommended that capsules be taken before meals for maximum effect. Capsules should be swallowed whole and should not be crushed, split or chewed.
For those with difficulty swallowing, the capsule should be opened and the granular contents sprinkled on a tablespoon of apple sauce, ENSURE pudding, cottage cheese, yogurt or strained pears and swallowed immediately. Granules also may be mixed in two ounces (60 ml) of apple, orange or tomato juice and swallowed immediately. For patients with a nasogastic tube, mix the granules can be mixed in two ounces of apple juice and injected through the nasogastric tube.
Is Helicol safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
Use of Helicol in pregnant women has not been adequately evaluated.
Helicol has not been studied in nursing women.
For Healthcare Professionals
Applies to Helicol: compounding powder, intravenous powder for injection, oral delayed release capsule, oral granule for reconstitution, oral suspension, oral tablet disintegrating
Generic Name: Helicol (lan SOE pra zol)Brand Names: FIRST Helicol, Prevacid
Medically reviewed by Sanjai Sinha, MD Last updated on Jan 11, 2019.
What if I take too much?
It is very unlikely that taking 1 or 2 extra doses by accident will cause any problems. However, you should check with your doctor if you have taken too much and have any of these symptoms:
- flushed skin
- feeling sweaty
- a fast heartbeat
- feeling sleepy
- blurred vision
- feeling confused or agitated
Most people who take Helicol do not have any side effects. If you do get a side effect, it is usually mild and will go away when you stop taking Helicol.
What is Helicol, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Helicol is in a class of drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPI) which block the production of acid by the stomach. Other drugs in the same class include
Proton pump inhibitors are used for the treatment of conditions such as ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome that are caused by stomach acid. Helicol, like other proton-pump inhibitors, blocks the enzyme in the wall of the stomach that produces acid. By blocking the enzyme, the production of acid is decreased, and this allows the stomach and esophagus to heal.
Helicol side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction ro Helicol: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
severe stomach pain, diarrhea that is watery or bloody;
new or unusual pain in your wrist, back, hip, or thigh;
a seizure (convulsions);
kidney problems - little or no urination, blood in your urine, swelling, rapid weight gain;
low magnesium - dizziness, fast or irregular heart rate, tremors (shaking) or jerking muscle movements, feeling jittery, muscle cramps, muscle spasms in your hands and feet, cough or choking feeling; or
new or worsening symptoms of lupus - joint pain, and a skin rash on your cheeks or arms that worsens in sunlight.
Taking Helicol long-term may cause you to develop stomach growths called fundic gland polyps. Talk with your doctor about this risk.
If you use Helicol for longer than 3 years, you could develop a vitamin B-12 deficiency. Talk to your doctor about how to manage this condition if you develop it.
Common Helicol side effects may include:
nausea, stomach pain;
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
How to store Helicol
- Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
- Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
More common side effects
The more common side effects of Helicol can include:
- stomach pain
If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. If they’re more severe or don’t go away, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
4. How and when to take it
It's usual to take Helicol once a day - first thing in the morning.
If you take Helicol twice a day, take 1 dose in the morning and 1 dose in the evening.
Helicol works best if you take it 30 minutes before a meal or snack. That's because food slows down Helicol getting into your system.
What Is Prevac >
Prevacid is the brand name for Helicol, a drug used to treat ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.
The drug is also available over-the-counter (OTC) at a lower strength to relieve heartburn and the symptoms of acid reflux.
Prevacid belongs to a class of drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPI) that decrease the amount of acid produced in the stomach.
PPIs block the enzyme in the wall of the stomach that produces acid.
When acid is reduced, the stomach and esophagus can heal. There's some evidence that using this drug can also help prevent ulcers.
Prevacid is available in a delayed release capsule and a “SoluTab” that disintegrates in your mouth.
Helicol is also available in a powder kit to be compounded into an oral suspension under the name First-Helicol.
Prevacid was FDA approved in 1995 and is marketed in the United States by Novartis.