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    Medicines That Interact With Alcohol

    Medicines That Interact With Alcohol

    Topic Overview

    Many prescription and over-the-counter medicines interact with alcohol. For example, drinking while taking a diabetes medicine such as insulin or insulin secretagogues (for example, sulfonylureas such as glipizide and glyburide) could result in very low blood sugar levels. Drinking while taking medicine for heartburn , such as cimetidine (Tagamet) or ranitidine (Zantac), could result in a fast heartbeat.

    Common medicines that interact with alcohol include:

    • Acetaminophen (such as Tylenol).
    • Antibiotics.
    • Antihistamines.
    • Tranquilizers.
    • Aspirin and other medicines to prevent clotting of blood (anticoagulants).
    • Some medicines to treat depression (antidepressants).
    • Medicines to treat diabetes (hypoglycemics).

    If you are taking any over-the-counter or prescription medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist whether you can safely drink alcohol.

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    Credits

    By Healthwise Staff
    E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
    Peter Monti, PhD - Alcohol and Addiction
    Last Revised July 29, 2013

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