Can You Take Pepcid And Lexapro Together?

Our pharmacist discusses the safety of taking Lexapro and Pepcid together in our latest question and answer.

Question

Should I take Lexapro (10mg), and Famotidine together? Are there any potential interactions?

Asked by TeeeK On Jul 27, 2023

Answered by
Medical Content Reviewed By HelloPharmacist Staff

Published Aug 08, 2023
Last updated Jul 18, 2024

Key points

  • Both Lexapro (escitalopram) and Pepcid (famotidine) have been reported to cause QT prolongation, an alteration of your normal heart rhythm.
  • The combination of Lexapro and Pepcid is unlikely to significantly increase the risk of QT prolongation, but certain populations are more at risk (such as those with decreased kidney function).

Quick Answer

Lexapro has been reported to cause QT prolongation in some individuals, which is a rare side effect that affects the electrical rhythm of the heart. Some sources also report that Pepcid (Famotidine) can cause QT prolongation as well, but it appears to be quite uncommon with the drug and generally, if it does occur, other factors have been at play.

Detailed Answer

Limited research is available regarding the interaction between Lexapro (escitalopram) and Pepcid (famotidine), and there is conflicting information presented in online drug interaction checkers. Certain ones may indicate an interaction, while others do not.

When an interaction is reported, it is due to the fact that both medications have been reported to cause QT prolongation as a side effect in some individuals, so the 'interaction' is essentially an increased risk of QT prolongation occurring.

QT prolongation refers to an abnormality in the electrical rhythm of the heart that can increase the risk of serious arrhythmias, including torsades de pointes (Tdp).

It is important to note that while Lexapro has a fairly definitive association with QT prolongation (it's mentioned in the prescribing information for the drug), Pepcid is generally not associated with it.

The occurrence of QT prolongation with Pepcid appears to be rare, and when reported, it has occurred in those with impaired renal (i.e., kidney) function where the dosing intervals might not have been appropriately adjusted. The prescribing information for Pepcid notes QT prolongation only in those reduced kidney function:

QT Prolongation: Advise patients with moderate and severe renal impairment of the risk of QT interval prolongation. Report new cardiac symptoms, such as palpitations, fainting and dizziness or lightheadedness immediately to a healthcare provide.
Pepcid Prescribing Information

So, the overall risk of the combination of Pepcid and Lexapro causing QT prolongation and related side effects is considered to be very low (unless you have a condition that puts you more at risk, like reduced kidney function).

Final Words

As always, it is best to consult with your healthcare provider to assess your individual situation and make an informed decision about taking Lexapro and Pepcid together. They can evaluate factors such as your medical history, current medications, dosage adjustments, and any preexisting conditions that may increase the risk of QT prolongation.

References

  • Famotidine and long QT syndrome, PubMed
  • Lexapro Prescribing Information, FDA
  • Pepcid Prescribing Information, FDA

About the Pharmacist

Dr. Brian Staiger, PharmD

Dr. Brian has been practicing pharmacy for over 13 years and has wide-ranging experiences in many different areas of the profession. From retail, clinical, program development, and administrative responsibilities, he's your knowledgeable and go-to source for all your pharmacy and medication-related questions! Dr. Brian Staiger also has herbalist training and educational certificates in the field of medical ethnobotany. Feel free to send him an email at [email protected]! You can also connect with Dr. Brian Staiger on LinkedIn.

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