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Proton Pump Inhibitors Linked to Severe Kidney Disease and Bone Fractures

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are a group of drugs mainly used to relieve symptoms of acid reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux disease. PPIs have been linked to an increased risk of bone fractures, heart attacks, cardiac birth defects (only in Prilosec), and more recently chronic kidney disease (CKD). The risk of proton pump inhibitor side effects has been found to increase with long-term use. The FDA has announced label changes that will reflect the increased risk of a proton pump inhibitor fracture, particularly PPI hip fracture. No action by the agency has yet been taken involving Proton Pump Inhibitor kidney damage or PPI renal damage.


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Gastroenterologists are already cautious in prescribing PPIs as they've been linked to other health problems, such as an increased risk of intestinal infections such as Clostridium difficile infection, and pneumonia, Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly of the Clinical Epidemiology Center at the VA Saint Louis Health Care System, told CBS News.

Proton Pump Inhibitor Information

alt=Proton pump inhibitors are used to treat heartburn. They are also used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), ulcers in the stomach and small intestine, and inflammation of the esophagus.

Prescription PPI medications in the proton pump inhibitor class include: (Generic name in parentheses)
Proton pump inhibitors sold over-the-counter include:
  • Prilosec OTC (omeprazole)
  • Zegerid OTC (omeprazole)
  • Prevacid 24HR (iansoprazole).

Proton Pump Inhibitor Kidney Damage

Researchers have found that people who take the popular PPI drugs are more likely to develop kidney failure and chronic kidney disease, particularly if the drugs are taken over a long time. Because PPIs are generally viewed as safe, they may be over-prescribed and continued for long periods without being necessary, Reuters Health reported.

Because some PPI medications are sold over-the-counter, they are potentially more at risk of being overused than prescribed PPI medications.

Chronic kidney disease is increasing in the US, with more than 20 million Americans now suffering with it, according to the American Society of Nephrology.

PPI Kidney Disease Studies

January 2016: A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine found a 20-50 percent increased risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD) associated with Nexium and other antacid drugs. The risk of a decline in kidney function was 32 percent higher for people taking PPIs and the risk of new cases of chronic kidney disease was 28 percent higher, according to Reuters Health. The JAMA study involved more than 20,000 people from national VA databases who recently took PPIs. This group was compared to almost the same amount of people who were taking H2 blockers. The study team concluded that people taking PPIs were at a much higher risk of new kidney problems than those people taking H2 blockers.

The JAMA study indicates that patients should use PPIs only when medically necessary. Dr. Morgan E. Grams, a kidney specialist at Johns Hopkins and another author of the JAMA study told CBS News that patients who require a long course of PPIs should routinely monitor their kidney function.

2015: Two studies suggested a link between PPIs and CKD. Dr. Pradeep Arora, a nephrologist and associate professor at the SUNY Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Science in Buffalo, NY., said "It is very reasonable to assume that PPIs themselves can cause chronic kidney disease." Researchers also found that people taking a PPI had nearly twice the risk of dying prematurely.

The second study was conducted by researchers at Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital in Australia, and Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. They followed more than 10,000 adults with normal kidney function from 1996 to 2011 and found PPI users were up to 50 percent more likely to develop chronic kidney disease than non-PPI users.

2009: A study conducted in Copenhagen and published in Gastroenterology reported that PPI use may produce a "rebound"acid effect, likening the condition to "dependency"on the medications. Researchers found that patients have almost impossible difficulties in stopping PPIs because the medications eventually cause the same problems they are supposed to treat. This phenomenon, called "rebound acid hypersecretion," can occur after taking prescription-strength PPI medication for just two months. Researchers concluded that this rebound effect can continue for up to three months after discontinuing the PPI.

PPI Kidney Disease Lawsuits

Proton Pump Inhibitor kidney failure lawsuits have been filed against AstraZeneca—the Nexium and Prilosec manufacturer—and Takeda Pharmaceuticals, which makes Prevacid. Nexium patients claim that AstraZeneca failed to warn physicians and patients of the increased risks of kidney damage and renal failure. Further, if AstraZeneca had properly warned of the risks, patients would have chosen a different medication and/or would have had regular kidney function monitoring.

In 2017, a lawsuit files against AstraZeneca and Proctor & Gamble, alleging that use of Nexium and Prilosec caused a woman to develop chronic kidney disease. The lawsuit, filed by Wanda Stafford, claims the companies failed to warn consumers about the risk of side effects linked to the medications. The lawsuit seeks punitive and compensatory damages.

Proton Pump Inhibitor Bone Fractures

Proton Pump Inhibitor Side EffectsLong-term and/or high dose use of proton pump inhibitors has been linked to an increased risk of fractures, including hip, wrist and spine fractures. A study examining 145,000 people in England found patients who used the medications for more than a year had a 44 percent higher risk of hip fracture than people who did not use the medications. The largest risk was seen in people who took high doses of the drugs for more than a year. In that group, the risk of hip fractures was twice as great as patients who did not use the medications.

An editorial accompanying studies in the May issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine noted that proton pump inhibitors have US sales of $13.9 billion annually. The same editorial argues that proton pump inhibitors have been over-prescribed for inappropriate uses.

Proton Pump Inhibitor Warning

According to the FDA news release (05/25/10), the FDA's review of several studies, "found those at greatest risk for these fractures received high doses of proton pump inhibitors or used them for one year or more." FDA notes the majority of people evaluated were 50 years of age or older and this age group showed an increased risk of fracture. Although the risk was observed in people using prescription proton pump inhibitors, the label on over-the-counter medications is also being changed as a precaution.

Over-the-counter proton pump inhibitors are recommended only for 14 days of continuous use.

Approximately 15 million people in the US alone are taking either over-the-counter or prescription PPI medications, according to CBS News. In 2013, the PPI Nexium was the second-best selling drug in the pharmaceutical industry, generating over $6.1 billion in sales worldwide for AstraZeneca, as reported by Medscape.

Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) Legal Help

If you or a loved one has suffered kidney disease or bone fractures as a result of using any of the above mentioned products, please click the link below and your complaint will be sent to a Drug and Medical Device lawyer who may evaluate your claim at no cost or obligation.
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Prevacid Side Effects could include an increased risk acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease

Prilosec PPI Side Effects including severe kidney disease, bone fractures, heart attacks and cardiac birth defects

Nexium Use and Increased Risk for Fracture

Plavix and Nexium A Potentially Dangerous Combination

AstraZeneca, Nexium Side Effects alleging severe kidney disease and risk of bone fractures


Prilosec Kidney Damage Lawsuits
Prilosec Kidney Damage Lawsuits Washington, DC: The risks of taking popular heartburn medications such as Prilosec likely outweigh the benefits. According to a recent study, PPI users may be increasing their risk of serious kidney damage without having any symptoms of kidney problems. Given this latest research and previous studies, attorneys are currently investing complaints involving Prilosec and kidney problems [READ MORE]

The Watchdog Group that Rang the Bell on Anti-acid Meds
The Watchdog Group that Rang the Bell on Anti-acid Meds Washington, DC The Washington DC based watchdog group, Public Citizen, was among the first to start ringing the warning bell. In 2011 Public Citizen demanded that the FDA warn patients and doctors that the use of the popular prescription acid-reducing drugs came with serious health risks [READ MORE]

Do Medication Guides for PPI Kidney Disease and Prevacid Lack Consistency?
Do Medication Guides for PPI Kidney Disease and Prevacid Lack Consistency? Washington, DC: It would come as no surprise that a common scourge amongst Americans remains acid reflux, and similar maladies. For them, a common prescription for a Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) serves to provide relief, and minimize the effects of heartburn and related ailments such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) [READ MORE]


Posted by
Lillian Tucker
My husband just died from stage 4 kidney disease.He was taking
Prilosec and then on omeprazole because his insurance wouldn't
He also broke his hip and had surgery on it.

Posted by
I have been on Nexium 40 mgs, for over 10 years . Over the years I have had a number of kidney stone operations to remove stones. I seem to get kidney stones every 2 years or so, my kidney Doctor is now checking on me every 6 to 12 months. When I saw him in Nov 2016, he found I had more stones. 12 small stones on the left and 2 on the right and a bit of scarring. 1 year ago I had stones removed from my right kidney. Do you think Nexium causes kidney stones? And to day my Doctor has change my medication to Somac EC 40mg as he said it is much safer.

Posted by
Bill Stone
I am a 58 year old male an I have been taking about all the PPLs that they are calming causes renal fail an I have also come down with a bone disorder Osteoporosis an my bone density is only 20 so now I am prone to bone fractures an it has destroyed my life.

Posted by
Donald Sass
I have taken Protonics for many years. Twice a day. I received a report from several sources, as example, Harvard News Letter, that it can cause dementia and other serious problems. Several of the leading medical newsletters I subscribe to state that the drug has now been proven to cause dementia. I have been recently had a Brain MRI with the results showing Dementia on both sides. Drs say it is not a problem as it takes many years to worsen since I am 83. I filed a request on this site a while back but have heard from no Attorney that is interested.

Posted by
Michael Powell
I have been taking Protonix and it's generic version Pantoprazole for 14 years and not once has any of my doctors said I should stop taking it. I was recently diagnosed with declining Kidney function. I was never aware that Protonix could damage my kidneys and really don't trust my doctor at this time. I have started gathering information on what I can do myself to try to reverse this problem, such as being on a low protein diet.

Posted by
Ashley Jump
I took prilosec for years and developed 8 kidney stones in 2 years. Have not taken it for a while and have not had any more stones.

Posted by
David V.
Proton pump Inhibitor (PPI) , mainly Nexium was used in my case was the root cause of developing kidney stone that was removed by surgery ( very painful experience when symptoms surfaced and through surgery and recovery) . PPI changes digestion system in many ways . PPI is affecting how body handles calcium . PPI directs body functions to start extracting calcium from bones making bones prone to fractions. PPI affects calcium processing in human body and directly affects kidneys and leads to creating sediments in kidneys. There is not enough studies that are focused on safety of our drugs .

Dexilant (dexlansoprazole)
Prevacid (iansoprazole)
Prilosec (omeprazole)
Zegerid (omeprazole)
Protonix (pantroprazole)
Aciphex (rabeprazole)
Vimovo (naproxen and esomeprazole magnesium)
Prilosec OTC (omeprazole)
Zegerid OTC (omeprazole)
Prevacid 24HR (iansoprazole).

Posted by
Jennie Drummond
I had taken Prevacid, protonix and nexium for several years prescribed by Drs.because I had a lot of trouble with stomach . In the meantime , I had one kidney to stop working and had 2 surgeries and then about 5 years later I was told I had cancer in the other kidney. After having seen 3 Drs for opinions, I was told the kidney would have to be removed and I had a complete nephrectomy .
I never recovered from any of this!! I have lost about 40 lbs. over a period of time and all muscle mass. I have pernicious anemia and have terrible bones according to results of density test ! If there is help, I could surely use it!! I have lost all .

Posted by
When I was taking Nexium or Prilosec I developed kidney stones for two year. The pain was excruciating, let me know if you can help me

Posted by
I have lost weight and continue to lose weight. I feel sick all the time, in my head and in my stomach. I read dreadful articles about the adverse effects of Protonix and was able to deduce this was causing my illness so that I could stop taking it. I wonder if I will ever be well again.


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