Health Care

Long-term PPI use linked to stomach cancer

Long-term PPI use linked to stomach cancer”

Researchers found that long-term use of proton pump inhibitors to treat acid reflux can significantly increase a person's risk of stomach cancer, the latest negative health effect that has been linked to the drugs.

The risk rises in tandem with the dose and duration of treatment, their BMJ study shows.

To address the potential role of H pylori, the population-based study compared the use of PPIs with H2 blockers in 63,397 adults who had undergone successful eradication of H plyori.

153 participants (0.24%) developed gastric cancer post triple therapy; no participants were diagnosed with H pylori even though all of them had prolonged gastritis. The mean observation period lasted for 7.5 years. And a previous study of long-term use of common PPIs, such as Nexium, Prilosec and Prevacid, suggested they could potentially increase a person's risk for early death.

During that time, 3,271 of the study participants took PPIs for an average of almost three years and 21,729 took H2 blockers.

The results indicated that PPIs were linked with a doubling of the risk (2.44) of developing stomach cancer, whereas H2 blockers were not linked with any such elevated risks.

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The average time between triple therapy and the development of stomach cancer was just under five years, the University of Hong Kong study found.

Prolonged usage of PPIs raised the risk by 5 times after a year; over 6 times after two or more years; and over 8 times after three or more years. Furthermore, the longer PPIs were used by patients the higher the risk of developing GC became.

Tucson- The long-term use of some acid reflux medications could increase the risk of stomach cancer.

Overall doctors do not believe this to be damning enough for the removal of PPI, but instead issued the statement that doctors should "exercise caution when prescribing long-term PPIs".

Speaking to The Guardian, Stephen Evans, professor of pharmacoepidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said in response to the study results: "Many observational studies have found adverse effects associated with PPIs".

PPIs are commonly prescribed drugs that reduce the amount of acid produced in the stomach.

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