In a new study, researchers found that some popular heartburn treatments may be linked to iron deficiency.
Heartburn is a symptom of gastroesophageal reflux and caused by hydrochloric acid rising into the throat.
This condition affects more than two million Australians. Many people need to take medications to suppress acid secretion.
In the study, a group of researchers in Australia examined how proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) could influence people’s health.
PPIs is a class of acid suppressants that many people take for heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and peptic ulcers.
Previous recent studies have shown that long-term use of PPIs is linked to gastric cancer and enteric infection, chronic kidney disease and pneumonia.
In the study, the team analyzed data from more than 50,000 patients.
The researchers found that continuous PPI use for more than one year increased the risk of iron deficiency.
In addition, people using one tablet of 20 mg PPI or more daily had a higher risk of iron deficiency compared with people using less than one tablet daily.
Iron deficiency is the most common cause of anemia, which affects about 2.2 billion people in the world.
If left untreated, anemia can lead to serious health problems and even lead to death.
The team explains that PPIs could lead to iron malabsorption because the acid is necessary for iron absorption.
But many doctors tend to overprescribe PPIs and do not rigorously weigh their benefits against their harms.
It is important to increase awareness about the harmful effects. In addition, regular iron monitoring needs to be recommended during PPI use.
The lead author of the study is An Duy Tran.
The study is published in the Journal of Internal Medicine.
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