Study Reveal Kidney Failure and Diseases Being Caused By Common Heartburn Medications

Medications that are usually used to treat diseases such as acid reflux, heartburn, and ulcers tend to increase the risk for kidney failure and chances of getting chronic kidney diseases.

The recent Buffalo study found that the use of proton pump inhibitors, that are drugs responsible for reducing stomach acid production, increase the chances of getting chronic kidney diseases by 20% and further enhance the risk of kidney failure by 4 times.

In this study, researchers observed the health data of over 190,000 patients for almost 15 years. This research was published in February in the Pharmacotherapy. It is said to be one of the largest long-term work done in order to examine kidney function under the effects of PPIs.

Assistant Professor and Lead Investigator, Dr. David Jacobs said, “This study adds to a growing list of concerning side effects and adverse outcomes associated with PPIs.”

“Given the increasing global use of PPIs, the relationship between PPIs and renal disease could pose a substantial disease and financial burden to the health care system and public health.”

Jacob says, “PPIs are one of the most commonly prescribed medications in the U.S., with an estimated 113 million prescriptions filled in 2008, costing patients nearly $14 billion.”

He also added, “Due to acid reflux and related conditions only requiring short-term treatment with PPIs up to 70 percent of patients overuse these medications without benefit and are subjected to unnecessary adverse effects.”

Jacob said, “The prevalence of PPI use in the U.S. could have a devastating effect on public health. Because these drugs are still considered safe, education and deprescribing initiatives are needed to raise awareness among health care providers.”

Data for this study was obtained from medical insurance claims and prescriptions from an insurance company in Western New York.