At prescription strength, proton-pump inhibitors are associated with a potential 25% increased risk of early death from any cause, suggests new research published Monday in the British Medical Journal Open.
This study did not examine over-the-counter proton-pump inhibitors or particular brands of prescription-strength drugs.
The drugs, known as PPIs (i.e. Nexium and Prilosec), suppress excess acid in the stomach. Generally, prescription formulas are taken by patients with severe conditions for long periods, while lower-dose over-the-counter formulas are approved for only short-term use by the US Food and Drug Administration.