Proton Pump Inhibitor Lawyer

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are used to block enzymes in the stomach that produce acid, which, ultimately, reduces the production of stomach acid.

PPIs are commonly prescribed medications and may be purchased over the counter. However, PPIs have risks of complications that can impact a PPI user in the long-term. Warnings about the long-term consequences of PPI use were not made available to prescribers or users until recently and in some cases, there are still no warnings.

An experienced proton pump inhibitor attorney can help you protect your rights if you have experienced complications from the long-term use of PPIs. A skilled mass torts attorney can assist with any questions you have in your case.

PPI Treatment

This is one treatment option for:

  • Acid reflux
  • Heartburn
  • Damage to the esophagus
  • Indigestion
  • Stomach ulcers

Risks Associated with PPIs

The stomach is sensitive to changes in its environment so when PPIs limit the amount of stomach acid produced, the amount of stomach acid that is then shifted into the intestine is also reduced.

As a result, there may be an increased risk of colon infections. Higher dosages and long-term use of PPIs can also increase the risk of kidney disease, osteoporosis-related fractures, and heart attacks.

A recent study in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology established that PPI users are 28 percent more likely to develop chronic kidney disease than those that do not use PPI. It further established that the PPI users that develop kidney disease are 98 percent more likely to go into renal failure.

Elevated Risks

Stomach acid is necessary to absorb nutrients from food that is ingested. When PPIs limit the amount of stomach acid that the body produces, all of the vitamins and nutrients that reach the stomach may not be absorbed, which can increase the risk of vitamin and/or mineral deficiency.

This impacts bone health, which may eventually lead to osteoporosis-related fractures, such as a broken hip.

In 2015, a Stanford University School of Medicine study determined that there is an elevated risk of heart attacks among PPI users. While the study did not specifically find that PPIs increased the chances of a heart attack, the study did establish that there is not an increased risk of heart attacks in people that were prescribed H2 blockers, which is another medication that is effectively used to treat heartburn.

Long-Term Use

Accordingly, the research strongly suggests that there is a causal link between PPIs and heart attacks, but researchers cannot definitively state why yet.

Prior to 2010, PPIs, such as Prevacid, Prilosec, and Nexium, did not have warnings that the drugs may increase the risk of bone fractures, among other side effects. In turn, physicians and patients were unaware of the increased risks with long-term use.

PPIs were not intended to be long-term fixes. However, the lack of warnings about the long-term effects of PPI may have impacted the overuse of the medication in the medical community thereby making it important that a proton pump inhibitor attorney is consulted.

Contacting an Attorney

Determining the link between drug side effects and a subsequent medical condition is difficult, especially since drug manufacturers are not forthcoming about their willingness to withhold information from the public for the sake of profit.  It is a confusing area of law that can be difficult to navigate for even experienced attorneys.

Accordingly, if you have suffered a serious side effect after taking PPIs, it is important to work with a proton pump inhibitor lawyer that has successfully handled proton pump inhibitor cases.