calcium carbonate, Caltrate 600, Os-Cal 500, Tums Extra, Tums Chewy Delight, and Many Others

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What brand names are available for calcium carbonate?

Caltrate 600, Os-Cal 500, Tums Extra, Tums Chewy Delight, and Many Other Brands and Generics

Is calcium carbonate available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: yes

Do I need a prescription for calcium carbonate?

no

What are the side effects of calcium carbonate?

Calcium products rarely cause an upset stomach. Common side effects owing to excessive intake and increased levels of calcium in the blood (hypercalcemia) include:

Other side effect due to severe hypercalcemia may include:

Calcium supplements cause rebound stomach acidity.

Quick GuideWhat Is Osteoporosis? Treatment, Symptoms, Medication

What Is Osteoporosis? Treatment, Symptoms, Medication

What is the dosage for calcium carbonate?

  • The usual recommended dose of calcium replacement is 1 to 1.2 g given daily in 2 or 4 divided doses with meals.
  • The dose for use as an antacid is 2 to 4 tablets per 24 hours not to exceed 7 g a day.

Which drugs or supplements interact with calcium carbonate?

: Calcium can make it difficult for the body to absorb certain medications. Calcium products bind to quinolone (for example, ciprofloxacin) and tetracycline (for example, Sumycin) antibiotics in the intestine and can prevent their absorption into the body. To prevent this interaction, doses of quinolone and tetracycline antibiotics should be separated by three or more hours from doses of calcium.

Calcium carbonate-containing products reduce acidity in the stomach. The reduction of acid decreases the absorption of iron from the intestine. Therefore, doses of calcium and iron should be separated by a several hours.

Calcium products also bind to sodium polystyrene sulfonate (Kayexalate, a drug used to treat high levels of potassium) in the intestine and, therefore, may interfere with the action of Kayexalate. Doses of Kayexalate and calcium products should be separated by several hours.

Is calcium carbonate safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

: Use of calcium supplements during pregnancy appears to be safe, but such use should be done under the supervision of a healthcare professional.

Calcium products appear in breast milk but are considered safe during breastfeeding.

Calcium supplements are safe when used by nursing mothers.

What else should I know about calcium carbonate?

What preparations of calcium carbonate are available?

Tablets Chewable: 500, 750, 1000, 1177 mg

How should I keep calcium carbonate stored?

Tablets should be stored at room temperature, 2 C and 25 C (36 F and 77 F).

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

Summary

Calcium carbonate (Caltrate 600, Os-Cal 500, Tums Extra, Tums Chewy Delight, and Many Other Brands and Generics) is a prescription drug used as part of a regimen to prevent and treat osteoporosis in individuals with low levels of calcium in their diets and as an antacid for minor upset stomachs. Side effects, drug interactions, dosage, storage, and patient safety information should be reviewed prior to taking any medication.

Treatment & Diagnosis

Medications & Supplements

Prevention & Wellness

Subscribe to MedicineNet's Women's Health Newsletter

By clicking Submit, I agree to the MedicineNet's Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of MedicineNet's subscriptions at any time.

FDA Logo

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Reviewed on 10/25/2016
References
Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors