Sucralfate (Carafate) for stomach ulcers available online

Sucralfate, commonly known as Carafate, is prescribed to treat stomach ulcers. It forms a protective barrier, protecting the ulcer from stomach acid and allowing it to heal. From esophagitis to gastritis, Carafate may offer versatile therapeutic benefits. Navigating gastrointestinal care has never been easier. Talk to our expert primary care doctors about getting a prescription for Carafate online for precision healing tailored to your needs.*

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Effectively promotes healing of gastric ulcers

Soothing relief for various gastrointestinal disorders

Helps prevent the recurrence of ulcers

*Prescriptions are provided at the doctor’s discretion. Our doctors cannot treat all cases of ulcers and may refer you to a local specialist. Learn more about our controlled substances policy.

How Sucralfate (Carafate) helps heal and protect the stomach lining

Sucralfate is part of the drug class known as "mucosal protective agents." Sucralfate effectively provides a protective barrier around ulcers and injured mucosal linings in the stomach and duodenum. By adhering to these areas, sucralfate forms a physical barrier that protects them from the corrosive effects of stomach acid, digestive enzymes, and bile salts.

Sucralfate is available in different forms, commonly as an oral suspension (liquid) and tablets (pills). You take it orally on an empty stomach at least one hour before meals and bedtime. This allows sucralfate to form a protective layer over the affected areas in the gastrointestinal tract.

Carafate is a well-known brand-name medication containing the active ingredient sucralfate. While primarily used for treating stomach ulcers caused by gastritis, Carafate also has other applications, such as:

With PlushCare, scheduling an online doctor appointment to discuss your treatment options for your specific gastrointestinal concern is easy.

Specific uses of Carafate (sucralfate) for gastrointestinal healing

  • Sucralfate is a versatile medication with multiple indications, primarily focused on treating gastrointestinal conditions. Some of its more common uses include:

    • Gastritis: Sucralfate helps manage gastritis, an inflammation of the stomach lining. By forming a protective barrier over the inflamed areas, it reduces irritation and promotes healing of the stomach lining.

    • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD): Sucralfate benefits those suffering from GERD, a chronic condition where stomach acid flows back into the esophagus.

    • Acid reflux: Sucralfate is used to treat acid reflux, characterized by the backward flow of stomach acid into the esophagus. The protective coating formed by sucralfate reduces the corrosive effects of stomach acid on the esophageal lining.

    • Esophagitis: Sucralfate addresses esophagitis, inflammation of the esophagus often caused by stomach acid. The medication's protective effects support the healing of the esophageal mucosa.

    • Heartburn: Sucralfate relieves heartburn, a burning sensation in the chest caused by stomach acid reflux, by forming a barrier that shields the esophagus.

    • Ulcers: Sucralfate is commonly used to treat peptic ulcers, including duodenal ulcers. By adhering to the ulcer site, Sucralfate creates a protective layer that aids healing and prevents further damage from stomach acid.

    In addition to its primary uses, Sucralfate has been explored for less common applications in certain medical conditions. It is important to note that any of these uses will depend on evaluation with a board-certified physician:

    • Nausea: While not a primary treatment for nausea, sucralfate's protective coating mechanism may have some impact on managing nausea associated with certain gastrointestinal conditions.

    • Esophageal damage from radiation therapy: Sucralfate has been explored for cases of esophageal damage caused by radiation therapy. The protective coating it forms may help mitigate the effects of radiation on the esophagus, offering a supportive approach to managing radiation-induced damage.

    • Acute gastritis: While primarily used for chronic gastritis, Sucralfate may also be employed in cases of acute gastritis. The protective barrier it creates can aid in reducing inflammation and promoting healing.

    • Laryngopharyngeal reflux: This painful condition involves the backflow of stomach contents into the throat. Sucralfate's protective action can alleviate irritation in the throat caused by stomach acid.

Tips on how to use sucralfate

It’s vital to take Sucralfate exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Here are some helpful tips for normal use: 

  • Take it on an empty stomach, at least one hour before meals and bedtime. This timing allows for forming a protective coating over the stomach lining before food is consumed, providing extended protection during the night when gastric acid production may be higher.

  • Avoid taking sucralfate at the same time as other medications, allowing for a 2-hour gap to prevent potential interactions.

  • Wait at least 30 minutes after taking sucralfate before you drink anything.

  • If taking the liquid suspension, shake the Carafate liquid well before measuring and taking a dose to ensure even medication distribution. 

  • Sucralfate tablets should not be dissolved in water. They are designed to be taken whole. Swallow the tablets with a full glass of water to ensure proper ingestion and prevent potential issues, such as the tablet sticking in the throat. 

  • Store Carafate at room temperature, keeping it from moisture and heat. Ensure it is stored securely and out of reach of children.

Sucralfate forms and dosages

  • Sucralfate is available in different formulations, commonly as tablets and liquid oral suspensions. Each form has advantages and may be preferred based on individual needs and medical conditions. Your doctor will help prescribe the correct dosage and form based on your specific condition and health history. 

    Both forms of sucralfate are used for similar indications, including the treatment of ulcers, gastritis, GERD, and other conditions affecting the gastrointestinal tract. The choice between liquid and tablet forms may depend on individual preferences, tolerances, and medical needs.

    Carafate liquid refers to the oral suspension form of sucralfate. This indicates a specific concentration of sucralfate in a 1gm/10ml liquid suspension, commonly used for dosing accuracy. It is a thick liquid formulation for coating and protecting the gastrointestinal mucosa.

    Carafate tablets, typically 1 gm each, are taken with water. The tablet dissolves in the stomach, forming a protective coating. 

    Liquid (oral suspension): advantages and disadvantages

    Liquid forms, like Carafate suspension, are easier to swallow, making them preferable for people with difficulty swallowing tablets. The liquid form may also provide a more immediate coating effect on the stomach lining, which could benefit certain conditions.

    The primary disadvantages of the liquid suspension are the taste and texture; some people find the liquid form distasteful and unpleasant. Liquid formulations may also have specific storage requirements.

    Carate tablets: advantages and disadvantages

    The primary advantages of the tablets are that they are convenient and portable. They are easy to administer and store, making them suitable for patients with a busy lifestyle.

    However, tablets take slightly longer to create a coating effect than liquid suspension.  Tablets may not be a good option for patients with difficulty swallowing.  

  • Carafate (sucralfate) dosage schedule

    The recommended sucralfate dose varies depending on the specific condition being treated and the form being taken.

    Common tablet dosage schedule

    Typically, your doctor will prescribe 1 gram of sucralfate to be taken on an empty stomach at least one hour before meals and bedtime. The total daily dosage may range from 2 to 4 doses, depending on the severity of the condition and the healthcare provider's prescription.

    Note that sucralfate tablets should not be dissolved in water. They are designed to be taken whole. Swallow the tablets with a full glass of water to ensure proper ingestion and prevent potential issues, such as the tablet sticking in the throat. 

    Common Carafate liquid dosage schedule

    The dosage of Carafate liquid, the oral suspension form of sucralfate, is typically measured in milliliters (ml) rather than grams. The usual dose is 1 gram (1000 mg) or 10 ml of Carafate suspension. Like the tablet form, it is often taken multiple times a day, with the number of doses determined by the severity of the condition and your healthcare provider's guidance.

What are the pros and cons?



  • Effective in treating ulcers: Sucralfate may be effective in treating and preventing ulcers in the stomach and intestines. It provides targeted relief to ulcerated areas, aiding in the healing process.

  • Protects gastrointestinal lining: One of the key benefits of Sucralfate is its ability to form a protective barrier at the ulcer site, shielding the damaged gastrointestinal lining and preventing further damage from gastric acids.

  • Safe for long-term use: Sucralfate is generally considered safe for prolonged use, making it a good option for chronic conditions that require ongoing ulcer management.

  • Alternative for those who can't tolerate PPIs: For patients who cannot tolerate other ulcer medications, such as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), or have concerns about the long-term effects of acid suppressants, sucralfate provides a valuable alternative.


  • Drug interactions: Sucralfate can potentially interfere with the absorption of other medications. Careful management of dosing schedules is necessary to avoid compromising the effectiveness of co-administered drugs.

  • Side effects: Some users may experience side effects such as constipation, dry mouth, and upset stomach. 

  • No immediate symptom relief: Unlike antacids, sucralfate does not provide immediate relief from acute ulcer pain. Instead, it acts as a protective agent, forming a barrier to aid in healing. 

  • Not suitable for all types of ulcers: While effective for duodenal ulcers, Sucralfate may not be as effective for other gastrointestinal ulcers.

Side effects and precautions for sucralfate (Carafate)

  • In addition to its intended benefits, this medication may have potential adverse effects. While not all of these side effects are likely to happen, it is crucial to seek medical attention if they do occur.

    Side effects may include:

    • Constipation: The most common side effect of sucralfate is constipation. Maintaining adequate hydration and dietary fiber can help alleviate this side effect.

    • Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar): Diabetic patients may see an increase in blood sugar while using, rarely leading to significant hyperglycemia. If diabetic, it’s important to monitor blood sugars and contact your doctor right away if significantly elevated. 

    • Aluminum toxicity: Patients with severe (end-stage) renal disease are at slight risk of absorbing too much aluminum, which is an ingredient in Carafate. If you have kidney disease, discuss this with your doctor when considering Carafate.

  • Foods to avoid during treatment of peptic ulcer disease

    Avoid acidic foods and citrus fruits

    Citrus fruits and acidic foods are best avoided if you have ulcers, as these foods can exacerbate ulcer symptoms. However, no substantial evidence supports the complete avoidance of acidic foods. Since many of these foods are healthy, only avoid them if they worsen your symptoms. Some acidic foods that worsen your symptoms include blueberries, grapefruit, grapes, lemons, limes, oranges, peaches, pineapples, plums, and tomatoes. 

    Stay away from spicy foods

    Spicy foods can also aggravate duodenal ulcers, slowing the healing process and reducing the effectiveness of sucralfate. If spicy foods worsen your symptoms, avoid them until your ulcer heals.

    Fatty and greasy food makes symptoms worse 

    High-fat foods, especially greasy and fried ones, take longer to digest and can worsen ulcer symptoms like nausea and stomach pain. Additionally, consuming these foods can stimulate your stomach to produce more acid and digestive enzymes, increasing ulcer pain and slowing sucralfate's ability to help heal.

    Be selective about dairy products  

    Dairy products can exacerbate stomach issues, particularly ulcers. If dairy worsens your ulcer symptoms, avoiding it while taking sucralfate is advisable. However, it's important to note that certain dairy products, such as fermented ones, may benefit ulcers. Therefore, it's not necessary to eliminate all dairy products unless they specifically worsen your ulcer pain.

    Avoid foods that cause excess gas 

    It’s advised to avoid foods that cause excess gas if they contribute to your stomach pain or feelings of fullness. However, if these foods don't create gas-related issues for you, there's no need to exclude them from your diet while taking sucralfate. Some examples of gas-forming foods include apples, artichokes, beans, lentils, bran, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, onions, prunes, and whole wheat products.

  • Interactions and contraindications

    Sucralfate can interact with certain medications, which can impact their absorption. Taking sucralfate and other medicines at least two hours apart is advisable to minimize these interactions. Notable interactions may occur with proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as omeprazole, rabeprazole and pantoprazole. Co-administration of Sucralfate with these medications may reduce the effectiveness of both drugs.

    The use of sucralfate in combination with omeprazole may result in reduced benefit. Omeprazole can decrease stomach acidity, potentially affecting the activation of sucralfate.

    Like other PPIs, the co-administration of Carafate and pantoprazole should be spaced apart by at least two hours to avoid potential interactions. While there is no specific contraindication with alcohol, it is advisable to consult your doctor regarding alcohol consumption while using sucralfate. Additionally, inform your doctor about any substances or supplements you are using, as they may influence the effectiveness of sucralfate. Your doctor will provide personalized guidance based on your medical history and specific circumstances.

Alternative treatments to sucralfate

  • When considering alternatives to sucralfate for treating ulcers and gastrointestinal issues, your doctor may explore various options based on your condition, medical history, and response to treatment. Some alternatives include:

    • Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs): PPIs, such as omeprazole, rabeprazole, and pantoprazole, reduce stomach acid production and are commonly used to treat conditions like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and peptic ulcers.

    • H2 blockers: H2 blockers, like ranitidine and famotidine, reduce stomach acid by blocking histamine receptors. They are often used for the treatment of ulcers and GERD.

    • Antacids: Antacids like aluminum hydroxide and magnesium hydroxide provide quick relief by neutralizing stomach acid. They are often used for symptom relief but may not promote healing like sucralfate.

    • Coating agents: Similar to sucralfate, some medications coat the stomach lining to provide protection. These include medications like bismuth subsalicylate.

    • Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) eradication therapy: If H. pylori infection is present, antibiotics and acid-reducing medications may be prescribed to eradicate the bacteria and promote healing.

    • Dietary and lifestyle modifications: Adopting dietary and lifestyle changes, such as avoiding trigger foods, managing stress, and maintaining a healthy weight, can complement medical treatments for gastrointestinal issues.

  • Comparing sucralfate with other medications

    Gaviscon vs. Carafate

    Gaviscon is an over-the-counter antacid that contains aluminum hydroxide and magnesium carbonate. It works by neutralizing stomach acid and creating a protective barrier to help relieve symptoms of heartburn and acid reflux. Gaviscon is more focused on symptom relief rather than promoting the healing of ulcers. It's suitable for short-term use to alleviate discomfort associated with acid reflux.

    Carafate (sucralfate), on the other hand, is a prescription medication that forms a protective barrier over ulcers and stimulates cellular re-growth, aiding in the healing process. It is primarily used for treating duodenal ulcers and may be prescribed for longer-term use to support healing.

    Gaviscon is helpful for short-term relief of acid reflux symptoms. Carafate is prescribed for those with duodenal ulcers or other gastrointestinal issues requiring a protective coating for healing.

    Omeprazole vs. sucralfate

    Omeprazole belongs to the proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) class and reduces stomach acid production. It is commonly prescribed for conditions like GERD, peptic ulcers, and erosive esophagitis. Omeprazole effectively prevents excess stomach acid production but may not provide the same protective coating as sucralfate for healing ulcers.

    Sucralfate creates a protective barrier over ulcerated areas, promoting healing and preventing further damage. It is often used for duodenal ulcers and may be prescribed for a localized protective effect.

    Omeprazole and sucralfate serve different purposes, with omeprazole focusing on acid reduction and sucralfate creating a protective barrier.

Carafate FAQs

  • Why Is Carafate liquid so expensive?

    Like many medications, the cost of Carafate liquid can be influenced by production expenses, research and development costs, and market demand. It is recommended to check with pharmacies and insurance coverage or explore generic alternatives for potential cost-saving options.

  • Is Carafate a proton pump inhibitor?

    Carafate (sucralfate) is not a proton pump inhibitor (PPI). It works differently by forming a protective barrier over ulcerated areas in the gastrointestinal tract, promoting healing and preventing further damage.

  • What is RX sucralfate used for?

    RX sucralfate is prescribed to treat ulcers in the stomach and intestines. It helps protect the gastrointestinal lining, aiding in the healing process.

  • Can Carafate cause weight gain?

    Weight gain is not a reported side effect of Carafate. 

  • Do you have to take sucralfate 4 times a day?

    Generally, it is taken multiple times a day, but the dosing frequency of sucralfate can vary based on individual needs and the specific condition being treated. Talk to your doctor and take sucralfate precisely as prescribed. 

  • How long can you stay on Carafate?

    Your doctor will determine the duration of Carafate use based on your medical condition and treatment response. Depending on your specific needs, it can be prescribed for short-term or long-term use. Regular follow-up appointments with your doctor are essential to monitor progress and adjust treatment as necessary.

How to get Carafate online

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Book an appointment to discuss Carafate.

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Step 2

Talk to your doctor online about your gastrointestinal symptoms.

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Step 3

Pick up your Carafate medication, if prescribed.

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Carafate pricing details

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PlushCare is dedicated to providing you with accurate and trustworthy health information.

  1. PubMed. "Gaviscon Double Action Liquid (antacid & alginate) is more effective than antacid in controlling postprandial esophageal acid exposure in GERD patients: a double-blind crossover study" Accessed on December 16, 2023 at

  2. Medsafe. Accessed on December 16, 2023 at

  3. National Center for Biotechnology Information. Accessed on December 16, 2023 at

  4. National Center for Biotechnology Information. Accessed on December 16, 2023 at

  5. PubMed. “Mechanisms of action of sucralfate” Accessed on December 16, 2023 at

  6. UW Family Medicine & Community Health. Accessed on December 16, 2023 at

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