What are PPIs?
Our firm is exploring Tennessee PPI lawsuits. PPI stands for “proton pump inhibitor”, a type of heartburn-preventative drug that works by reducing the amount of acid produced by the stomach. Unlike many heartburn medications, which simply act to neutralize stomach acid, PPIs essentially prevent the body from creating stomach acid in the first place. Although PPIs provide effective short-term heartburn relief, use of PPI medications for an extended period of time can create severe health risks.
What Injuries Are Caused by PPIs?
By blocking the production of stomach acid, PPIs make it difficult for the body to process certain substances. Calcium, in particular, is very difficult for the body to break down and absorb with insufficient stomach acid production. If PPIs are only taken occasionally, or for very short periods of time, this effect may be temporary and insignificant. In the long term, however, the calcium shortage caused by PPIs can make the patient’s bones particularly brittle and prone to fractures.
Many patients have come forward with claims against PPI medication manufacturers, alleging that the medication significantly weakened their bones and led to breaks or fractures that would not have otherwise occurred, particularly fractures of the hip, wrist, and spine.
In a 2010 safety warning, the FDA stated that patients taking PPIs for a year or more, or taking high prescription dosages, are at a particularly heightened risk for fractures. Elderly patients also have a higher chance of suffering bone damage as a result of taking PPI medication.
Medical literature supports that PPIs can cause nephritis, or inflammation of the kidneys. The lead author of one of the studies believes, “It is very reasonable to assume that PPIs themselves can cause chronic kidney disease,” said Dr. Pradeep Arora, a nephrologist and associate professor at the SUNY Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Science in Buffalo, N.Y. “There are a couple of theories that might explain this link between PPIs and chronic kidney disease.The kidneys might become damaged over time if patients suffer repeated bouts of acute interstitial nephritis (a form of tissue inflammation), which has been linked with short-term use of PPIs. PPIs also can cause magnesium levels in the blood to decline. A lack of this important mineral might also cause damage to the kidneys.”
Which drugs contain PPIs?
A large number of gastrointestinal drugs contain PPIs, including brand names such as:
- And more. Check with your pharmacist if you suspect that your medication contains PPIs.
I or a loved one have suffered kidney problems or bone fractures while taking a PPI medication. What’s my next step?
If you or a loved one have suffered injuries connected to use of a PPI medication, call the Tennessee PPI lawyers and personal injury attorneys at David Randolph Smith & Associates immediately. Our experienced Nashville PPI attorneys stand ready to evaluate your case and offer the best advice for the next step in your prescription drug lawsuit.