Difference Between Zantac and Pepcid

Zantac and Pepcid are the medicines approved for the treatment of peptic ulcers and reduction of acid production in the stomach, and also in relieving heartburn. Zantac is the brand name of ranitidine hydrochloride, and Pepcid is the brand name of famotidine. 

Zantac vs Pepcid  

The main difference between Zantac and Pepcid is that Zantac is the medication given for treating stomach and intestine ulcers, whereas Pepcid is given for treating heartburn caused because of the acidity and sour stomach. Ranitidine is the generic name of Zantac, whereas famotidine is the generic name of Pepcid. 

Zantac and Pepcid

Zantac is also known as H2 blockers. It helps in relieving cough, stomach ache, difficulty in eating up. It is used to stop stomach indigestion and heartburn. It is also available without a doctor’s prescription. For self-treatment, read the instructions properly so that you know when to consult the doctor. 

Pepcid helps in decreasing the acid production in the stomach. It also helps in treating the problems such as Zollinger -Ellison syndrome, where acid travels from the stomach into the esophagus, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) causing heartburn. Patients having kidney, asthma, breathing problems should consult doctors before taking this medicine.

Comparison Table Between Zantac and Pepcid

Parameters of Comparison  Zantac Pepcid  
Generic name  Ranitidine Famotidine  
Uses  Used to treat acid indigestion and heartburn.  Used to treat and stop the ulcers in the stomach and intestines.    
Precautions  For self-treatment, instructions should be read carefully.  People having kidney and liver problems should consult a doctor before taking this medicine.  
Side effects  People may suffer from stomach pain, drowsiness, insomnia, etc.  People may suffer from diarrhoea, mood changes, fatigue, constipation, etc.  
Work alongside  Triazolam, glipizide, midazolam, warfarin, etc can be taken alongside Zantac.  Ketoconazole, NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), or aspirin can be taken alongside Pepcid.  

What is Zantac?  

It is known that Zantac is also called ranitidine, and ranitidine is sold in the brand name of Zantac. It is used in the treatment of issues such as GERD, problems in the food pipe, ulcers, heartburn caused due to excess acid production in the stomach. Zantac is also called H2 Blockers, which decreases the amount of acid in the stomach.  

It comes as a tablet, aerated granules, syrup, which can be easily taken by mouth. Zantac is normally consumed once or twice a day. Generally, the prescription should be followed properly or should ask the doctor or pharmacist if they do not understand the instructions for the intake of medicine. It should be taken according to the doctor only, and the patient should not increase the doses by himself. Zantac should not be taken for more than 2 weeks. If acid indigestion, sour stomach, and heartburn last more than 2 weeks, you should stop taking medicine and should consult your doctor first.  

If a person has an allergy, is pregnant or are breastfeeding, has or has ever had kidney or liver disease, taking supplementary products should tell the doctor. Nausea, stomach pain are some side effects of Zantac that should be considered for a healthy life.  

What is Pepcid?  

The generic name or brand name of Pepcid is famotidine. It is given for the treatment of heartburn, duodenal ulcers, damage in the lining of the esophagus, and conditions such as Zollinger – Ellison syndrome. It is used as a combination therapy which means it needs to be taken with other medicines. This drug minimizes the amount of acid realization in the stomach and gives relief from the pain.  

Some side effects of Pepcid are dizziness, diarrhea, etc., and children below one year may also feel agitation, restlessness, etc. If these effects go severe, call the doctor immediately. The dosage of this medicine may vary depending on many factors such as age, type, and severity of the problem. Taking these medications may cause certain allergy problems such as rashes, trouble in breathing, hives, swelling in the throat, etc. People allergic to these drugs should not take these medicines again. 

People having moderate or severe kidney problems may not be able to clear the drug from the body. Even this may increase the level of drugs in the body. These increased levels may cause more side effects such as confusion and irregular heart rhythm. Precautions should always be considered before the intake. 

Main Differences Between Zantac and Pepcid 

  1. Zantac is the brand name of ranitidine and also the generic name of ranitidine, whereas Pepcid is the brand name of famotidine, also the generic name of famotidine. 
  2. Zantac is used in the treatment of stomach indigestion and heartburn, whereas Pepcid is helpful in the treatment of duodenal ulcers and food pipe problems.  
  3. Instructions should be read carefully for self-treatment, whereas people with kidney and liver problems should consult doctors while taking Pepcid.  
  4. Insomnia, drowsiness, etc., are the side effects of Zantac, whereas fatigue, constipation, and mood changes are the side effects of Pepcid.  
  5. Supplements such as triazolam, warfarin, etc., can be taken alongside Zantac, whereas Ketoconazole, aspirin can be taken alongside Pepcid.  


Zantac and Pepcid both medicines are useful in the treatment of heartburn, stomach indigestion, conditions such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Both these medicines should not be taken without a doctor or pharmacist’s prescription and should be kept away from children. People with severe diseases should not take these medicines excessively.  

The medicines should be taken at the right time with the right diet. People should avoid having liquor while consuming these medicines; otherwise, it will be led to an increase in stomach problems. Precautions must be followed before taking medicine. Otherwise, it may lead to severe problems which can last long for the whole life.  

Zantac is prescribed for ulcers and GERD, and Pepcid is prescribed for people having heartburn issues. Both these medicines were manufactured in 1981. Both these drugs are histamine 2 blockers and are also called antihistamines.  

It is also studied that some cancer problems may arise by taking these medicines, and therefore it was previously banned also. So, one should also keep in mind the consequences of having any medicine, and the previous conditions should be properly communicated to the doctor to avoid further consequences. 


  1. https://europepmc.org/article/med/2896559
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S001650858580024X
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