Rabeprazole (Oral Route)

Rabeprazole helps in the treatment of digestive ulcerations by reducing the amount of acid that is produced by the stomach.


Rabeprazole is used for the treatment of a range of conditions, including:

  • Duodenal ulcers
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Ulceration caused by H.pylori bacteria
  • Zollinger-Ellinson syndrome

Rabeprazole works as a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) to lower the quantity of acid that is produced in the stomach.

This medication is only available as prescribed by your doctor and comes in the forms of Aciphex or Aciphex Sprinkle. The medication is administered as a delayed release capsule or as an enteric coated tablet.

These medications should always be swallowed whole and should not be broken or chewed at all. Parts of these capsules and tablets may appear in your stools, which is normal and you should not be worried if this occurs.

Conditions Treated

  • Duodenal ulcers
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Ulceration caused by H.pylori bacteria
  • Zollinger-Ellinson syndrome

Type of Medicine

  • Proton pump inhibitor

Side Effects

In addition to the desired effects of Rabeprazole, other unwanted side effects may also occur. In some cases these side effects may abate over time and be mild, but in other cases they can require you to seek medical attention. Before beginning treatment you should familiarize yourself with the following common side effects:

You should inform your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following side effects from the use of Rabeprazole:

Occurring less commonly:

  • Bloated or swollen face, arms, hands, lower legs or feet
  • Chills
  • Coughing
  • Darkened urine
  • Dryness of the mouth
  • Feverishness
  • General tiredness
  • General weakness
  • Hoarseness
  • Lightened coloration of stools
  • Lower back pain
  • Nausea
  • Pain or difficulty experienced during urination
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Side pain
  • Tingling in the hands or feet
  • Unusual weight gain
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Vomiting
  • Yellowing of the eyes
  • Yellowing of the skin

Occurring only rarely:

  • Blood in the urine
  • Convulsions and seizures
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Soreness of the throat
  • Ulceration or sores in the mouth that don’t heal
  • Unusual bleeding
  • Unusual bruising
  • Unusual tiredness
  • Unusual weakness

Frequency of incidence not known:

  • Black or bloody stools with a tar-like appearance
  • Bleeding of the gums
  • Blistering of the skin
  • Blood appearing in the urine or stools
  • Changed consciousness
  • Clouded urine
  • Confusion about self, place, and/or time
  • Continuing nausea
  • Continuing vomiting
  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • General feeling of tiredness
  • General feeling of weakness
  • General swelling of the body
  • Headaches
  • Hearing or seeing things that are not present or are not experienced by others
  • High fever
  • Hives
  • Increased frequency of seizures
  • Increased heartbeat
  • Itching
  • Joint pains
  • Loss of hunger
  • Loss of level of consciousness
  • Mental changes
  • Mood swings
  • Muscle cramping
  • Muscle pains
  • Muscle spasming or twitching
  • Muscle stiffness
  • No blood pressure
  • No breathing
  • No pulse
  • Nosebleeds
  • Pain in the back, leg or stomach
  • Paleness of the skin
  • Puffy or swollen around the eyes, face, lips or tongue
  • Red spots appearing on the skin
  • Significant decrease in frequency or volume of urination
  • Skin rash
  • Sores or ulcers
  • Stools with a clay-like coloration
  • Swelling of glands
  • Swellings with a hive-like appearance on the:
    • Eyelids
    • Face
    • Feet
    • Hands
    • Legs
    • Lips
    • Sex organs
    • Throat
    • Tongue
  • The holding of beliefs even when disproven by fact
  • Tightness across the chest
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Unusual excitement
  • Unusual nervousness
  • Unusual restlessness
  • Unusual unpleasant breath odor
  • Vomiting of blood
  • White spots appearing on the lips or mouth

Some side effects can also occur that would not usually necessitate that you visit a doctor for medical attention or advice. These side effects may be mild or may go away after a period of time as your body adapts to the treatment. Your healthcare professional may also be able to advise you on how best to alleviate these side effects. If they become bothersome or are ongoing then you should inform your healthcare professional:

Occurring more commonly:

  • Unusual aftertaste that is bad or unpleasant
  • Change perception of taste

Occurring less commonly:

  • Body aching
  • Body pains
  • Congestion
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Excess build up of air or gas in the stomach or intestines
  • Feeling of weakness
  • Feeling full
  • Heartburn
  • Numbness, pain, tingling or weakness in the hands and/or feet
  • Pains
  • Passing of gas
  • Runny nose
  • Sleepiness
  • Swelling of joints
  • Tenderness or swelling of glands in the neck
  • Voice changes

Frequency of incidence not known:

  • Blistering of the skin
  • Peeling of the skin
  • Loosening of the skin
  • Red and irritated eyes
  • Skin lesions appearing red and often with a purple center

Other side effects that have not been listed herein can also occur. If you experience any other side effects then you should seek advice from your doctor. If you are worried about your immediate health, however, then you should contact the emergency services straight away.


This medication should only ever be used as directed by your doctor. It should not be used in higher quantities nor more frequently than prescribed. You should not take it for longer than your prescription lasts either.

This medication will come with a guidance booklet that you should read and ensure you understand before use. If you have any questions after reading this booklet then you should contact your doctor for advice.

The tablets should be swallowed whole. They are designed to release slowly into the body and should not be taken if they are crushed, dissolved or broken in any way. Doing so will lead to a greater dose being released into the body in one go. These tablets and capsules can be taken with or without food unless you have been directed by your doctor to take them with food.

If children are unable to take the delayed release capsules whole then you should use them as follows:

  • Do not swallow whole.
  • Consume no more than 30 minutes before eating a meal.
  • Open the capsule and pour contents onto a small item of food or into a small drink.
  • Consume within 15 minutes of preparation.
  • Do not save for use later on.

If you are taking this medication for the treatment of an ulcer caused by infection then you should take them at the same time of day as the antibiotics you have been prescribed.

The dose of this medication will be different for all patients. The dose received will depend on the strength of the medication, the age of the patient and the condition that the patient is being treated for. You should always follow the instructions given to you by your doctor and the instructions on the medication that is being prescribed. Do not make any changes to your dosing or frequency of use without first consulting your doctor. The following information is a guideline only:

For the use of delayed release tablets:

In the treatment of duodenal ulcers:

  • Adults—20mg taken once daily following the morning meal.
  • Children — The use and dose of this treatment in children must be decided by the prescribing doctor.

In the treatment of duodenal ulcers with H. pylori infection:

  • Adults—20mg taken with a meal twice daily for a period of 7 days. This treatment would usually be taken in conjunction with clarithromycin and amoxicillin in this case.
  • Children — The use and dose of this treatment in children must be determined by a doctor.

In the treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD):

  • Adults—20mg taken once daily.
  • Children aged 12+ — 20mg taken once daily.
  • Children below the age of 12 — Use would not be recommended.

In the prevention of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD):

  • Adults—20mg taken once daily.
  • Children — The use and dose of this treatment in children must be decided by the prescribing doctor.

In the treatment of Zollinger-Ellison syndrome:

  • Adults—60mg taken once daily. This dose may adjusted by your doctor.
  • Children — The use and dose of this treatment in children must be determined by the doctor.

For the use of delayed release tablets:

In the treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD):

  • Children aged 1-11 who weigh 15kg+ - 10mg taken once daily.
  • Children aged 1-11 who weigh less than 15kg - 5mg taken once daily.
  • Children aged younger than 1 – Use would not be recommended

If a dose of this medication is missed then you should take it as soon as you can unless you are close to your next scheduled dose. In this case you should skip the missed dose and return to your usual dosing schedule. Do not ever take a double dose of Rabeprazole.


Some medications should not be used together at all as they can cause severe side effects in the patient. In other cases medications can stop one another from working or increase the risk of experiencing side effects. In these cases it is necessary to take precautions against the complications caused by the use of more than one medication. To prevent these interactions it is vital that you inform your doctor of all medications that you are taking so they can ensure no interactions will occur. This is particularly important if you are taking any of the following treatments:

This medication should not be used in conjunction with Rabeprazole. Your doctor may choose not to prescribe Rabeprazole or may change your other prescription:

  • Rilpivirine

Rabeprazole is not normally recommended for use alongside the following medications. In some cases your doctor may prescribe both but may make changes to one or more of the prescriptions:

  • Vismodegib
  • Velpatasvir
  • Saquinavir
  • Pazopanib
  • Nilotinib
  • Nelfinavir
  • Mycophenolate Mofetil
  • Methotrexate
  • Ledipasvir
  • Ketoconazole
  • Gefitinib
  • Eslicarbazepine Acetate
  • Erlotinib
  • Digoxin
  • Dasatinib
  • Clopidogrel
  • Cilostazol
  • Bosutinib
  • Atazanavir

Rabeprazole, when used in conjunction with the following medication, can cause an increased risk of occurrence or severity of certain side effects. The use of both medications may still be the best treatment in certain cases, but your doctor may wish to make adjustments to dose or frequency of use:

  • Levothyroxine

This medication can also interact with certain foodstuffs. Patients should avoid consumption of cranberries or cranberry juice when taking this medication.

The presence of other medical conditions can also impact the use of medications. You should ensure that you have informed your doctor of all medical conditions from which you suffer before you begin this treatment. This is especially important in the following cases:

These conditions may be worsened by use:

  • History of broken bones
  • History of diarrhea
  • History of hypomagnesemia
  • History of osteoporosis
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency

Effects and side effects of the treatment may be intensified in patients who suffer from the following condition because of slower removal of the medication from the body:

  • Liver disease

Other medications, foods and medical conditions not listed herein may also impact your use of this medication. You should inform your doctor of all treatments that you are taking and all conditions that you have before beginning use of this treatment.


Before taking Rabeprazole you should consider the benefits of use in relation to the risks of use. You should consider this with your doctor and you should take the following factors into account:


If you have any allergies to any kind of foods, drinks, dyes, medications, preservatives or other substances then it is very important that you inform your doctor before you begin use of this treatment.


The use of Rabeprazole to treat children under the age of 1 who are suffering from gastroesophageal reflux disease would not be recommended. There have also been no studies to determine safety and efficiency of use in children for the treatment of ulcers caused by infection, duodenal ulcers or Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Discuss use with your doctor before beginning treatment.


There are no known limitations to the use of this treatment in the elderly. Be cautious of age-related conditions that may impact use.


Use of this treatment may have an effect on the fetus in a pregnant woman. You should discuss the risk in relation to the benefit of use before you begin treatment with this medication.


There may be risks to breastfeeding whilst using this treatment. You should discuss breastfeeding with your doctor before use. Alternative treatments may be provided instead.

You should contact your doctor immediately if you experience changes to your urine when using this medication. These changes can be a sign of the development of serious kidney conditions.

This medication can cause diarrhea and traditional diarrhea treatments can actually make this worse in some cases. You should contact your doctor before taking any treatment for diarrhea.

This medication can increase the chances of experiencing fractures in the hips, spine and wrists. These risks increase if you take the treatment more than once daily and if use is prolonged for over a year. If you develop severe pain in the bones then you should immediately contact your doctor.

This medication can cause a worsening of systemic lupus erythematosus. If you suffer from this condition and your condition begins to worsen during use then you should immediately contact your doctor for advice.

This medication can cause patients to suffer from hypomagnesemia. This condition occurs when there are low levels of magnesium in the blood. The risk of this condition developing increases as your use of treatment is prolonged. If you experience the following symptoms then you should contact your doctor immediately:

  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of hunger
  • Mental changes
  • Mood changes
  • Muscle spasming
  • Muscle twitching
  • Nausea
  • Seizures
  • Trembling
  • Unusual tiredness
  • Unusual weakness
  • Vomiting

You should not take any medications in addition to the use of Rabeprazole without first discussing this use with your doctor. This includes the use of over the counter treatments, herbal remedies, prescription treatments and vitamin supplements.


This medication should be stored at room temperature and away from direct light, moisture and heat.

Prevent from freezing.

Keep all medications away from children at all times, even when the medication is for use by your child.

Dispose of outdated and unwanted medication appropriately as directed to by your doctor.


Rabeprazole is used to treat ulcerations that occur in the digestive tract. The treatment works by inhibiting the production of acid by the stomach to create a friendlier environment in which to promote healing.

In cases of ulceration caused by infection this treatment will often be used alongside antibiotics to help promote the healing of the condition.

Rabeprazole can be taken either with or without food and is taken as a delayed release tablet or capsule. These treatments will then release into the system slowly to administer the appropriate dose. It is common for parts of these tablets to appear in your stools. This is normal and should not cause concern.

This treatment can expose the patient to risks of developing serious side effects. You should ensure that you understand the potential side effects of this treatment before beginning use.

Controlling your diet during use can also help with the healing of the ulcerations.

Patients using this medication more frequently than once daily and patients using it for a prolonged period of longer than a year are more likely to experience side effects and more likely to suffer severity of side effects.


Last Reviewed:
January 31, 2018
Last Updated:
January 27, 2018
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