Addition Of Sorbitol-mannitol In Medications Is Making Me Sicker!!!

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Maggie Says:

I am so frustrated with drug companies adding sugar alcohols like sorbitol and mannitol in medicines. I have been taking Prilosec for gastritis for about 10 months. My doctor asked that the pharmacist give me an rx (for gastritis) that does not contain sorbitol. I have been taking the Prilosec for over 1 month and I am still having my symptoms. I just check the ingredients and it contains mannitol which is just like sorbitol. WHY is this allowed in medicine. There are a huge number of people (especially those with irritable bowel syndrome) who are becoming sicker because sorbitol and mannitol causes gastritis issues with them and others like me who get extremely sick (and dehydrated) with just a little bit of this! It is extremely dangerous for young children and the elderly. How can I stop this?

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Verwon Says:

Hi, Maggie! Sorry about the problems that you're having.

However, first I would like to make sure that it's known that gastritis is not just gas, which is frequently caused by sorbitol and mannitol, as well as their relatives. Gastritis is actually an inflammation of the entire lining of the stomach, it's basically like having your entire stomach turn into a giant ulcer. I suffer from it myself, but most times I seem to do better with antacids, such as Pepcid.

Thus, when the sorbitol and mannitol cause gas, it may irritate and cause pain in the stomach of someone afflicted with gastritis, but they will not actually cause gastritis themselves.

If both of them cause you problems, then that is something you need to make your pharmacy aware of, because they can screen the medications for you to help you find one that you can take. Just glancing down the list of generics for Prilosec that are available in the U.S., I've already found 5 that use Lactose, rather than Mannitol.

Learn more Prilosec details here.

And something I discovered, when I tried Prilosec for my gastritis is that these PPIs can cause stomach pain as a side effect, it can also cause gas itself, so there's a chance that it might not be the right medication for you to take. That's why I had to switch to Pepcid.

Is there anything else I can help with?

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David Says:

Hi Maggie,

I couldn't agree more with you on the frustration of having these poisons in our medication. They're not just dangerous for the young and elderly, but really every type of person.

Unfortunately, substances like this are in several different types of products, not just limited to prescription drugs. So I'm not sure how one would go about getting their voice heard on the matter, other than simply choosing not to support big pharma, by going the natural route. However, I think it's only a matter of time before most of their customers begin to turn away and find other means of treatment anyways.

It's can cause a big inconvenience when they don't list the inactive ingredients as boldly as the active ones; and often times not at all, forcing you to research it after you end up paying for it with your own safety.

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Maggie Says:

Thank you Verwon!
I want to clarify my posting. I know that sorbitol and mannitol don't cause gastritis but when I ingest even a tiny amount of sugar alcohols I get first terrible terrible pain from trapped gas, followed by "explosive liquid diarrhea" (gas + diarrhea), sweats sometimes shooting off my head and flu like symptoms. The day after a bad episode I feel like someone kicked my in the stomach. I read EVERY label and when I go to friend's houses for a meal I read the labels on the salad dressing etc. that they have used. I have been know to go into the kitchen in restaurants and ask to see a label. I have been aware of my sensitivity to sugar alcohols probably since the 70's. I have only recently been aware of the drug companies putting sugar alcohols into their products and it makes me really angry. My stepdaughter's former company used a sugar alcohol in their product and when I complained to her and she said, "well, it's only about 7% of the population that has a problem with it." Well, if she was one of the 7% she would have taken action! I can avoid buying packaged foods that use sorbitol etc. as a preservative but when it comes to rx medicines it becomes more complicated. Years ago I got on a campaign to get it out of products but gave up. From the stuff I read it is very dangerous for young children and older citizens (I'm 66) because of the issues of dehydration which is an issue with these two groups. Thank you for your info. on the other generics for Prilosec that are available using Lactose.

Sincerely, Maggie

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Maggie Says:


Thank you for all your information! I sent a reply but for some reason it didn't go through. I understand that sorbitol, mannitol etc. does not cause gastritis but it does give me gastritis like symptoms. I'll give my doctor the info that you sent!

Thanks again.

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