Study Links Heartburn Medications (Prilosec, Nexium, and Prevacis) to Kidney Disease

By on April 21, 2016

A study by John Hopkins University released April 18, 2016, links popular hearburn medications to higher rates of kidney disease.

The commonly used drugs belong to a category called proton pump inhibitors that work by blocking acid secretions into the stomach. In conducting the epidemiological study, the researchers looked at the health records of large numbers of patients. The study concluded that people who used proton pump inhibitors had a 20 to 50 percent higher risk of chronic kidney disease, and that the higher the dose the higher the risk.  Prilosec, Nexium and Prevacis are popular protein pump inhibitor drugs used by millions of Americans.

Chronic kidney disease is a serious condition that impairs the functioning of the kidneys, requiring dialysis in serious cases, and potential kidney failure.

Although the study was not a clinical study, the researchers noted that other heartburn medications that were not protein pump inhibitors were not associated with the same levels of risk.

The study was widely covered in the media.