The Fitness Fixer
The Fitness Fixer

Prescription Acid-Reducing Drugs Produce Heartburn and Dependency

In a study of acid-suppression drugs, healthy adults with no previous symptoms developed

Project 365 - Day 149 - 02/12/08 

"heartburn, acid regurgitation and dyspepsia" after a course of the drugs. Forty percent of 120 volunteers taking anti-heartburn drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) had a rebound increase in gastric acid secretion, resulting in acid levels above their starting levels.

Study - "Proton-pump inhibitor therapy induces acid-related symptoms in healthy volunteers after withdrawal of therapy." Gastroenterology. 2009 Jul;137(1):80-7, 87.e1. Epub 2009 Apr 10.

Gastroenterology is the official journal of the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) Institute. A comment appearing in the Journal stated, "Evidence that proton-pump inhibitor therapy induces the symptoms it is used to treat." Gastroenterology. 2009 Jul;137(1):80-7, 87. McColl KE, Gillen D.

PPI drugs for gastrointestinal symptoms is widely prescribed. Study authors stated, "This might lead to PPI dependency and thus have important implications."

In the previous Thank You to Grand Rounds, I noted that several prescriptions drugs are known to cause the problem of increased symptoms, rebound, or the original problem - Thank You Grand Rounds 5.50, Medicine & Technology.

It is becoming known that these drugs also do not target the source of the problem, so may not be needed. It does not seem necessary to start a course of drugs that perpetuates your symptoms. The Fitness Fixer article Stomach Acid Drugs Increase Osteoporosis and Hip Fractures explains more.

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Dr. Bookspan is an award-winning scientist whose goal is to make exercise easier and healthier.