Revised: 11 June 2015

Information for Consumers

Revised: 11 June 2015


Famotidine 20 mg tablets

What is in this leaflet

This leaflet answers some common questions about PEPZAN. It does not contain all the available information. It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.

If you have any concerns and questions about this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Keep this leaflet with the medicine. You may need to read it again.

What PEPZAN is used for

PEPZAN is used for short-term, symptomatic relief of heartburn, dyspepsia and excess acid (hyperacidity) and prevention of these symptoms when associated with food and drink.

PEPZAN belongs to a group of medicines called H2-antagonists or H2-blockers. PEPZAN works by reducing the amount of acid made by the stomach. This helps reduce the pain and also allows the ulcer and/or reflux disease to heal in most people.

PEPZAN is generally not recommended for use in children, as the safety and effectiveness have not been established.

PEPZAN is not addictive.

How PEPZAN works

PEPZAN provides rapid relief from heartburn, dyspepsia and hyperacidity. It has been clinically proven to control excess stomach acid for up to 10 hours. Unlike antacids, which neutralise acid, PEPZAN contains famotidine, an ingredient that controls the flow of excess acid and treats the cause of pain. The ingredient in PEPZAN has been prescribed by doctors for years and used by millions of people as an effective treatment of acid-related conditions.

Before you take PEPZAN

When you must not take it

Do not take PEPZAN if:

  • you have an allergy to PEPZAN or to any of the ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet. Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include skin rash, itchiness, shortness of breath or swelling of the tongue or face.
  • you have an allergy to any other 'H2-antagonist or H2-blocker' medicines. If you have had an allergic reaction to any of these before, you may be allergic to PEPZAN.
  • you are breast-feeding. PEPZAN passes into breast milk and therefore there is a possibility that the breast-fed baby may be affected.
  • the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering.
  • the expiry date on the pack has passed. If you take this medicine after the expiry date has passed, it may not work.

If you are not sure whether you should start taking PEPZAN, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Do not use PEPZAN for any other purpose other than that specified on the pack, unless under the supervision of a doctor.

Use with caution if over 40 years of age.

Before you start to take it

Tell your pharmacist if:

  1. you are pregnant, intend to become pregnant, or plan to breast-feed. Like most medicines, PEPZAN is not recommended for use during pregnancy. If there is a need to consider PEPZAN during your pregnancy, check with your doctor. PEPZAN passes into breast milk.
  2. you have kidney disease or any other medical condition.
  3. you have any allergies to any other medicines or any other substances, such as foods, preservatives or dyes.
Taking other medicines

Do not use PEPZAN with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines unless under the supervision of a doctor.

PEPZAN has not been shown to interact with other medicines.

How to take PEPZAN

How much to take

Adults and children 12 years of age or older:

  • Take one tablet to relieve the symptoms of heartburn, dyspepsia or excess acid. Repeat dose if symptoms return.
  • When these symptoms are associated with food and drink, take one tablet 15 minutes before eating.

Do not take more than 2 tablets in any 24 hour period.

Do not take tablets continuously for more than 14 days except on the advice of your doctor.

If you do not understand the instructions on the box, ask your doctor or pharmacist for help.

If you take too much (overdose)

Overdose has not been shown to result in any significant unwanted effects, however, contact your doctor or the National Poisons Information Centre (telephone 0800 POISON or 0800 764 766) if you think that you or anyone else may have taken more than the recommended number of tablets. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning.

While you are using PEPZAN

Things you must do

If you become pregnant while taking PEPZAN, stop your treatment and consult your doctor.

Things you must not do

Do not give PEPZAN to anyone else, even if they have the same condition as you.

Things to be careful of

Be careful driving or operating machinery until you know how PEPZAN affects you. PEPZAN generally does not cause any problems with your ability to drive a car or operate machinery. However, as with many other medicines, PEPZAN may cause dizziness in some people. Make sure you know how you react to PEPZAN before you drive a car or operate machinery.

Things that may help your condition
  • Alcohol - it is advisable to limit your alcohol intake.
  • Aspirin and many other medicines used to treat arthritis/period pain/headache - these medicines may irritate the stomach and may make your condition worse. Your doctor or pharmacist may suggest other medicines you can take.
  • Caffeine - it is advisable to limit the number of drinks which contain caffeine, such as coffee, tea, cocoa and cola drinks, because these contain ingredients that may irritate your stomach.
  • Eating habits - eat smaller, more frequent meals. Eat slowly and chew your food carefully. Try not to rush at meal times.
  • Food - avoid foods that cause you pain or discomfort.
  • Smoking - it is advisable to stop smoking or at least cut down.

Side Effects

Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are taking PEPZAN.

All medicines can have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time they are not. You may need medical treatment if you get some of the side effects.

PEPZAN is generally well tolerated. Side effects when taking PEPZAN are not common. Headache and dizziness have been reported rarely. Other side effects have been reported even more rarely.

As with all medicines, allergic reactions may occur but are very rare with PEPZAN. Itching, rashes, facial swelling, joint pains, shortness of breath or fainting may indicate that you are allergic to an ingredient in this medicine.

If any unusual symptoms occur while taking PEPZAN stop your treatment and see your doctor.

After using PEPZAN

  • Keep the pack in a dry place below 30°C.
  • Keep this medicine out of the reach and sight of children.
  • This medicine must not be used after the expiry date printed on the pack.

Further information

You can get more information on PEPZAN from your doctor or pharmacist.

Product Description

What PEPZAN looks like

PEPZAN are easy-to-swallow film coated tablets containing 20 mg famotidine as the active ingredient.


In addition to famotidine, PEPZAN tablets contain the following inactive ingredients:

Maize starch
Magnesium stearate
Polyethylene glycol
Titanium dioxide
Iron oxide yellow, red and black.

Manufactured by:

Douglas Pharmaceuticals Ltd
PO Box 45-027

Ph: (09) 835-0660
Fax: (09) 835-0665

April 2001

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