In the arms race against heartburn, one class of drug outperforms the competition by going straight to the source. The proton pump inhibitors, PPIs for short, block acid manufacture at the subcellular level. In contrast, acid reflux drugs such as Tums and Maalox neutralize the acid. Others, like Zantac and Tagamet, slow down its production by blocking the histamine 2-receptor. PPIs do require a day or two to start suppressing the symptoms of acid reflux. But once PPIs kick in, they put out the fire with stunning efficiency.
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