Referred to as the “silent kidney disease” because it can go undetected for years, researchers in the journal Kidney International (February 2017) said their study results “indicate kidney problems can develop silently and gradually over time, eroding kidney function and leading to long-term kidney damage or even renal failure.”
Over five years of follow-up analyzing the data of 144,032 people from the Department of Veterans Affairs database (125,596 participants were new users of PPIs and 18,436 were new users of another heartburn drug called H2 blockers) researchers at the Washington University in St. Louis found that over half of those using PPIs who developed chronic kidney damage and end-stage renal failure did not experience acute kidney problems. But only 7.67 percent of the H2 blockers group developed chronic kidney damage without experiencing acute kidney problems and 1.27 percent developed end-stage renal failure.
Researchers said these results indicate that onset of acute kidney problems is not a reliable warning sign to detect the decline of kidney function among those who are taking PPIs, including Prilosec, and that the clinicians should pay attention to the kidney function of their patients who use PPIs, despite the absence of acute kidney problems, reported Nature World News.
Studies in 2016 also linked Prilosec to kidney disease. Researchers published in JAMA Internal Medicine last January found a 20-50 percent increased risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD) associated with Prilosec and other antacid drugs, and in April 2016, the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN) reported that PPIs --including Prilosec-- may lead to an increased risk of kidney disease and kidney failure.
But this latest study is even more concerning, particularly because Prilosec is available over-the-counter (OTC) and many consumers take this med and other PPIs without being under a doctor’s care, and for too long.
READ MORE PRILOSEC SIDE EFFECTS LEGAL NEWS
A number of Prilosec lawsuits involving bone fractures have been filed against AstraZeneca, the manufacturer. Now that these studies show Prilosec kidney damage, attorneys are investigating complaints from hundreds of heartburn sufferers who claim the medication has caused chronic kidney disease, acute kidney injury, acute interstitial nephritis, renal failure, and kidney failure.