Gastric acid blockers are medications primarily prescribed for heartburn and regurgitation, as well as for inflammations of the intestine and the esophagus. But also concomitant with the use of analgesics, they are recommended. Acid blockers should help reduce the pH in the stomach. Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are often prescribed to reduce the production of stomach acid. This disrupts the natural balance in the stomach and intestines.
The stomach acid blockers are not harmless
Gastric acid inhibitors have long been controversial because side effects are greater than expected. Researchers Galateja Jordakieva and Erika Jensen-Jarolim of the Vienna Medical University have shown in studies that gastric acid inhibitors were not harmless. Since 2003, scientists have been studying gastric acid inhibitors and have found obvious side effects in animal experiments. Among other things, these so-called proton pump inhibitors hinder the absorption of calcium and vitamin B12 and thus promote osteoporosis, a bone disease, and can lead to nerve damage.
The stomach acid blockers promote allergies
The researchers analyzed the data of more than eight million patients in Austria and understood the frequency with which certain drugs were prescribed to people between 2009 and 2013. It was found that patients who had been prescribed a blocker were not able to use the drug. stomach acid, then who needed an allergy medication, were twice as many as in other patients. In addition, they found that the allergy-promoting effect increased even with age. For the over 60s, it was five times higher than the under 20s. Women were more affected than men.
Risk not only increased for food allergies
These are not just food allergies, but also, for example, allergies to pollen or house dust. Due to the blocking effect of stomach acid, the proteins in the stomach are no longer as well decomposed, which activates the signaling pathways, which can trigger allergies. It is still unclear if allergies go away by stopping the gastric acid blocker.
Do not take the stomach acid blockers lightly
The researchers of the journal "Nature Communications" published the results of their study, claiming that the inhibitors of gastric acid are not harmless, because they are prescribed too often and too lightly, and that the doctor Ulrich Fölsch of Schleswig-Holstein University Medical Center does not recommend the inhibitors of gastric acid. As a precaution, for example, take painkillers and, in addition, the drugs should be quickly discontinued.
In Germany, blockers of stomach acid are often prescribed. About 201 million insureds of the Barmer health insurance company were prescribed acid inhibitors in the stomach in 2018. Many proton pump inhibitors are also available free in pharmacy. All can increase the risk of allergies. As harmless as the drugs are announced, they are not in any case.