Omeprazole vs. Zantac – The Differences Between

Differences between Omeprazole and Zantac Both of these medicines Zantac and Omeprazole have a common objective: to help…

Differences between Omeprazole and Zantac

Both of these medicines Zantac and Omeprazole have a common objective: to help in the treatment of gastric troubles. The following diseases can be cured by both:

  1. Peptic ulcer: This is erosion in the stomach lining or the duodenum.
  2. Gastric ulcer: This is peptic ulcer located inside the stomach.
  3. GERD: Gastriesophageal Reflux Disease in which food and the acids in the stomach move upwards towards the esophagus and cause heart burns.
  4. Any other disease which increases the acid content of the stomach.

Both the medicines are effective in treating these because they both restrict the production of acid in the stomach. They just act in different ways to achieve the same goal.


Zantac or ranitidine belongs to a group of drugs called histamine 2 blockers. That is, Zantac attacks the Histamine receptors in the stomach cells which causes a reduction in acid production in these cells. Zantac is used to treat ulcers in the stomach and intestine. Zantac also treats conditions in which the stomach produces too much acid. It can provide relief to patients who have Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or any other disease in which the acid from the stomach passes out into the food pipe causing heartburns. Zantac provides relief because it reduces the amount of acid the stomach normally produces. Zantac also has antiemetic effects; because of this, it is prescribed before chemotherapy and in preoperative cases.


Omeprazole falls in a group of drugs called proton pump inhibiters. The proton pump is the Hydrogen/Potassium adenosine triphosphatase enzyme system, which secretes H+ ions in the gastric lumen, thus increasing its acidity. Omeprazole acts by restricting acid production in the stomach by supressing the action of the proton pump.

Like Zantac, it is also used to treat conditions caused by excess acid in the stomach like GERD and heals the damage caused to the esophagus by the stomach acids. Omiprazole may be given together with antibiotics to treat gastric ulcer. However, Omeprazole is not effective in providing immediate relief from heartburns.

The difference between Zantac and Omeprazole:

The main difference between them is that they have different modes of operation: Zantac acts on the histamine receptors while Omeprazole acts on the proton pump. Secondly, Zantac provides immediate relief and is used to reduce the chances of acidity, while the Omeprazole is considered more effective in the long term. In cases of peptic and gastric ulcers, Omeprazole is preferred, while Zantac is more commonly used for its antiemetic effects.

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