Recent studies have found that people who regularly use anti-heartburn drugs like Prilosec could be 50% more likely to develop kidney disease. The FDA has also issued warnings about nephritis (kidney inflammation), another side effect that can lead to kidney failure.
Need a Texas Prilosec Lawyer? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged. If you or a loved one was diagnosed with kidney failure, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit.
Prilosec and Kidney Failure
Prilosec is an antacid drug in the proton-pump inhibitor (PPI) class. All drugs in this class have been linked to acute interstitial nephritis — kidney inflammation and swelling due to an allergic reaction. Several studies have also linked PPIs with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).
No one knows why PPIs are associated with kidney disease. However, there are several theories. PPIs can cause low magnesium levels, and a lack of this important mineral could damage the kidneys. Patients who repeatedly develop nephritis (kidney inflammation) from PPIs could also develop kidney disease over time.
Study Links Prilosec and 96% Increased Risk of Kidney Failure
A study published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology by researchers in St. Louis has found a 26% increased risk of chronic kidney disease and a 96% increased risk of kidney failure associated with PPIs. Conclusions were based on data from 170,000 veterans who used PPIs and 20,000 who used H2-receptor antacids like Pepcid or Zantac.
Kidney failure occurred in 0.2% of study participants, but nearly twice as often in PPI users. After 5 years, kidney disease had been diagnosed in 15% of PPI users vs. 11% of H2-blocker users. Patients on PPIs for 1-2 years also had a 3-fold increased rate of kidney failure compared to those who only used PPIs for a month or less.
Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly, lead author of the study, warned:
“I think people see these medications at the drug store and assume they’re completely safe. But there’s growing evidence they’re not as safe as we’ve thought. [Patients should] use PPIs only when it is medically necessary, and should limit duration of exposure to the minimum necessary to treat the underlying medical condition.”
Studies Link PPIs and 50% Increased Risk of Kidney Disease
In January 2016, researchers at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore published a study linking the use of PPIs with a 20-50% increased risk of kidney disease. The conclusions of the study were based on data from more than 10,500 people with arterial disease. People who used PPIs twice a day had the highest risk of kidney disease.
In October 2015, researchers found that PPI users were 50% more likely to develop kidney disease than non-PPI users. Conclusions of the study were based on data from 24,000 people who developed kidney disease from 2001-2008. The researchers replicated these findings in a larger study involving 240,000 people from 1997-2014.
What are the Kidneys?
The kidneys are two fist-sized, bean-shaped organs located in the abdomen. They are primarily responsible for cleaning the blood and making urine. The kidneys also regulate blood pressure, electrolyte levels, and make hormones to keep bones strong.
What is Kidney Failure?
Kidney failure occurs when the kidney function deteriorates until they are unable to perform their basic functions or keep up with the body’s needs. This can cause complications in nearly every part of the body. Symptoms of kidney problems can include:
- High blood pressure
- Fluid retention
- Swelling in the feet and ankles
- Loss of appetite and weight-loss
- Changes in urine output (more or less)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Anemia (low blood count)
- Persistent itching or rash
- Muscle cramps
- Trouble sleeping
- Shortness of breath
- Abdominal or back pain
- Weak bones
Diagnosis & Treatment
Kidney failure is diagnosed with a urine test or blood test to measure creatinine, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), and glomerular filtration rate (GFR). An ultrasound or CT scan may also be used to create a picture of the kidneys. In patients with nephritis, a tissue sample from the kidneys (biopsy) is necessary for conclusive diagnosis.
Treating the underlying cause of kidney failure is usually the first step. Patients on Prilosec may need to switch to a non-PPI heartburn drug or stop taking antacid medications altogether. They may also need to take medications to control blood pressure. If the kidneys fail completely, the only treatment is dialysis or a kidney transplant.
Need a Prilosec Lawyer in Texas?
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Collen’s amazing success in the courtroom and well known dedication to his clients has earned him the recognition of his peers as one of The Top Trial Lawyers in Texas.”
The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more than 100 years experience, participation in over 600 jury trials and $260 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact our Texas Prilosec lawyers for a free lawsuit review.