Proton pump inhibitor (PPI) medications are commonly prescribed to individuals with heartburn and acid reflux disease. These drugs work by blocking acid buildup in the stomach. However, they also block calcium absorption, which may lead to a number of adverse side effects including wrist, spine and hip fractures.
Proton Pump Inhibitor Update 4/25/12: U.K. health regulators have issued two new warnings to the public stating that the use of proton pump inhibitor (PPI) heartburn drugs may cause bone fractures, and have the potential to lead to dangerously low levels of magnesium in the body. According to the warnings, these risks are increased if high doses of PPIs are taken over long periods of time, and appear to primarily affect the elderly. Click here to learn more.
Free Proton Pump Inhibitor Case Evaluation: If you or a loved one has suffered an injury due to any of the PPI medications listed in this article, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit and we can help.
What are Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) Drugs?
PPIs are widely prescribed for the treatment of various acid-peptic disorders including gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), peptic ulcer disease, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory druginduced gastropathy. These drugs work by reducing the production of acid by blocking the enzyme in the wall of the stomach that produces acid. This reduction of acid prevents ulcers and allows any existing ulcers to heal.
Unfortunately, mounting evidence and numerous case studies have found that long-term use of PPI medications may cause problems with the body’s ability to absorb calcium. Patients using PPIs for an extended period of time (typically over one year) are at risk of suffering fractures of the hips, wrists, forearms and spines. Particularly at risk are women over 50 and those who are post-menopausal.
Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) Side Effects
Proton pump side effects have been reported to include the following:
- Hip fractures
- Wrist fractures
- Spine fractures
- Abdominal pain
- Allergic reactions
- Heart attack
- Weight loss
- Erectile Dysfunction (ED)
On May 25, 2010, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) published information regarding the increased risk of fractures of the hip, wrist, and spine with high doses or long-term use of PPIs. The product labeling on such medications was ordered to be changed to describe this possible increased risk. The Administration’s decision to revise the labeling of PPIs was reportedly based on the review of several epidemiological studies that reported an increased risk of fractures of the hip, wrist and spine in patients using proton pump inhibitors.
“Epidemiology studies suggest a possible increased risk of bone fractures with the use of proton pump inhibitors for one year or longer, or at high doses,” said Joyce Korvick, M.D., deputy director for safety in FDA’s Division of Gastroenterology Products. “Because these products are used by a great number of people, it’s important for the public to be aware of this possible increased risk and, when prescribing proton pump inhibitors, health care professionals should consider whether a lower dose or shorter duration of therapy would adequately treat the patient’s condition.”
Types of Proton Pump Inhibitors
The following proton pump inhibitor brands have been included in the FDA’s new warning:
Do You Have a Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) Lawsuit?
The Product Liability & Defective Drug Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in proton pump inhibitor (PPI) lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new bone fracture cases in all 50 states.