Popular heartburn drugs known as proton pump inhibitors may raise the chance of death, new research shows. - From WebMD
It’s not the first time the drugs, also known as PPIs, have been linked to health dangers.
For some patients, doctors could determine the longer use is justified, and the study found the odds of death rose greatly when prescription-strength PPIs were taken for more than a year.
When the researchers factored in how long they took the drugs, the risk rose with length of use.
Most of the time, people aren't going to need to be on PPIs for a year or 2 or 3." In a study published in 2016, Matthew Pappas, MD, a research investigator at the Cleveland Clinic Center for Value-Based Care Research, found that the use of PPIs likely leads to more deaths in hospitalized patients not in the ICU.
In an email, Alexandra Engel, a spokeswoman for AstraZeneca, says: "We are confident in the safety and efficacy of Nexium and Prilosec when used in accordance with the FDA approved label, which has been established through numerous clinical trials.'' In a statement, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association, an industry group for makers of OTC medicines and supplements, notes that the new research did not look at over-the-counter products but only prescription PPIs, ''which are typically used at higher doses and for longer durations." The group recommended that consumers heed the FDA Drug Facts label to understand safe use.