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Nexium (Esomeprazole)

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Treatment Information

Table of contents

Patient Reviews: How Nexium (Esomeprazole) Has Made a Difference

What is Nexium?

Nexium is a brand of heartburn treatment from AstraZeneca. Nexium contains the active ingredient esomeprazole. The treatment is available as capsules or tablets, in strengths of 10mg or 20mg.

Esomeprazole is a medicine which reduces the amount of acid produced by the stomach. By controlling the amount of stomach acid being produced, the likeliness of experiencing acid reflux is reduced.

Acid reflux, commonly known as heartburn, is a condition in which stomach acid is regurgitated. This can occur when lying down or bending over after a meal, but can also result from damage to a ring shaped muscle above the stomach called the lower oesophageal sphincter (LOS).

Symptoms of acid reflux include:

  • Burping
  • Coughing
  • Hiccups
  • Nausea
  • Sore throat
  • Sour or acidic taste

Esomeprazole is also used to treat and prevent ulcers in the stomach and intestines, which can be caused by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or bacteria called Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori).

If you are suffering from heartburn, it is important to speak to your doctor to determine the cause of your condition. Your doctor will be able to provide advice on how to manage and prevent heartburn.

With Prescription Doctor's private prescription service, you can buy Esomeprazole online, following a consultation with our online doctor. Our prescribers are on hand to issue a prescription for our UK pharmacy to fulfil. All orders of Esomeprazole are dispatched from our UK based pharmacy via a next-day discreet delivery service.

How does Esomeprazole work?

Nexium contains a proton pump inhibitor called esomeprazole. This medicine reduces the amount of acid produced in the stomach.

Esomeprazole works by preventing parietal cells in the stomach from secreting hydrochloric acid, lowering the risk of acid rising up the gullet and causing the pain and discomfort which are the common symptoms of gastro-oesophageal reflux.

How long does Nexium take to work?

Nexium tablets get to work within an hour to reduce the amount of stomach acid.

However, it may take up to 2 or 3 days for the full benefits of Nexium to be reached.

How do I take Esomeprazole?

Esomeprazole is usually taken once daily.

Nexium tablets and capsules should be swallowed whole with a glass of water.

You can take Nexium tablets and capsules with or without food.

If you have trouble swallowing capsules, you can open Nexium capsules and empty the contents into a glass of water and drink. You will need to refill the glass once more and drink a second glass of water to ensure no residual medicine resides at the bottom of the glass.

Nexium (Esomeprazole) is also available in granules. To take Nexium granules, empty the contents of the sachet into a glass and fill with still water. Stir and drink immediately or within 30 minutes. Refill the glass once again and drink a second glass to ensure no residual medicines resides at the bottom of the glass.

More information on how to take Esomeprazole can be found in the patient information leaflet enclosed with your medicine.

If you are unsure how to take Esomeprazole, speak to your doctor or a pharmacist for assistance.

Nexium (Esomeprazole) side effects and cautions

Before you begin taking Nexium, you must read the patient information leaflet enclosed with your treatment.

You can read the patient information leaflet for Nexium online, via the Electronic Medical Compendium (EMC) website.

Side effects of Nexium

Like all medications, Esomeprazole carries the risk of causing unwanted side effects, though you may not experience them.

Common side effects of Esomeprazole (may affect up to 1 in 10 people) include:

  • Benign polyps in the stomach
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Flatulence
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Stomach ache
  • Vomiting

Uncommon side effects of Esomeprazole (may affect up to 1 in 100 people) include:

  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Hives
  • Insomnia
  • Itchy skin
  • Skin rash
  • Sleepiness
  • Spinning sensation (vertigo)
  • Swelling of the feet and ankles
  • Tingling of the extremities

Rare side effects of Esomeprazole (may affect up to 1 in 1000 people) include:

  • Agitation
  • Blurred vision
  • Changes in sense of taste
  • Confusion
  • Decreased sodium levels in the blood
  • Depression
  • Generally feeing of malaise or lethargy
  • Hair loss (alopecia)
  • Increased sweating
  • Inflammation inside the mouth
  • Joint or muscle pains
  • Sensitivity to the sun
  • Shortness of breath
  • Thrush

This is not an exhaustive list of side effects associated with Nexium. Further information about the side effects and warnings can be found in the patient information leaflet enclosed with your medicine.

If you experience any side effects after taking Esomeprazole tablets or capsules, whether they are listed above or in the patient information leaflet, contact your doctor or a pharmacist for advice.


Do not take Nexium if you are allergic to Esomeprazole, similar medicines or any of the inactive ingredients listed in the patient information leaflet.

If you experience an allergic reaction after taking Nexium, stop taking it and seek immediate emergency attention. Remember to take the packaging and any remaining medicine with you, so that doctors know exactly what you have taken.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Esomeprazole is not suitable for breastfeeding women.

Inform our prescriber if you are pregnant or intend on becoming pregnant before you start taking Nexium.

Other safety information

Always read the patient information leaflet before you start taking Nexium.

Esomeprazole may impact the effectiveness of other medicines. It is important to inform our prescribers of all the medicines you are taking, including those on prescription, bought from a pharmacy or health supplements. This information will help our doctor to determine the safety of Esomeprazole for you.

Do not take Nexium past the expiry date printed on the packaging.

Never throw away Nexium capsules or tablets via household or water waste. Take any unwanted or expired medicines to your local pharmacy and ask them to throw them away for you. These measures cna help to protect the environment.

Always keep medicine out of the sight and reach of children and pets.

Never share your medicine with anybody else, even if they are experiencing the same symptoms as you.

Frequently asked questions about Nexium (Esomeprazole)

What should I do if I forget to take Nexium (Esomeprazole)?

If you forget to take Nexium (Esomeprazole) when you should, take it as soon as you remember. If it is nearly time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and continue taking your medicine as you normally would.

Do not take more Nexium (Esomeprazole) to make up for the missed dose.

What should I do if I take too much esomeprazole?

If you take more Esomeprazole than you should, speak to your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.

Will Nexium (Esomeprazole) affect my ability to drive or operate machinery?

If you experience side effects such as dizziness or blurred vision after taking esomeprazole, do not drive or operate machinery.

Can I drink alcohol while taking Nexium (Esomeprazole)?

While it is unlikely that an interaction between Esomeprazole and alcohol will occur, alcoholic beverages can exacerbate symptoms of heartburn.

For this reason, it is recommended not to drink alcohol while suffering from or treating heartburn or gasto-oesophageal reflux with esomeprazole.

Can I buy Nexium online in the UK?

You can buy Nexium from our trusted online pharmacy. When you order Esomeprazole from Prescription Doctor, your order is reviewed by an online doctor to ensure that the medicine is safe for you to take. If it is deemed suitable, a prescription will be issued for our UK based pharmacy to fulfil.

All products on our website are approved for use in the UK by the MHRA and are dispatched via a discreet next-day delivery service from a GPhC registered pharmacy.


Treatment information

  • Product Name: Nexium (Esomeprazole)
  • Manufacturer: AstraZeneca
  • Active Ingredient(s): Esomeprazole magnesium dihydrate
  • Administration: Oral
  • Presentation: Tablets and sachets
  • Available Strength: 10 mg sachets, 20 mg and 40 mg tablets
  • Exemption: Prescription Only
  • Application: Men and women over 18
  • Dosage: Take one tablet daily
  • Description: Nexium is a treatment for heartburn and gastro-oesophageal reflux
  • Drug Class: Proton pump inhibitor
  • Alcohol Consumption: Avoid or limit alcohol consumption
  • When Pregnant: Inform our prescriber if you are pregnant or intend on becoming pregnant during your consultation. Speak to your GP for further information.
  • When Breastfeeding: Do not take Nexium if you are breastfeeding. For more information, speak to your GP or pharmacist.
  • Price: 6.99 GBP
Click here to view the Nexium (Esomeprazole) - Patient Information Leaflet

Authored & Reviewed By

Mohamed Imran Lakhi

Mohamed Imran Lakhi

MPharm - Lead Pharmacist
Imran Lakhi is the superintendent pharmacist and founder at Prescription Doctor. He has been at the core of our team.

Published on: 26/04/2019 Reviewed on: 13/03/2024

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