Navigation Links
Acid-Suppressing Meds May Boost Pneumonia Risks
Date:5/26/2009

Routine use in hospitalized patients should be re-evaluated, experts say,,,,

TUESDAY, May 26 (HealthDay News) -- Instead of helping them get better faster, giving acid-suppressing medications to many hospital patients actually increases their risk of developing pneumonia while in the hospital, new research suggests.

In critically ill hospital patients, the medications have been shown to prevent serious gastrointestinal problems caused by the physical stress of illness. And, because the potential for benefit seemed clear and the risk of side effects appeared low, use of the drugs also became commonplace in patients who were not in intensive or critical care.

This oft-used practice, though, has been questioned by a study in the May 27 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. It found that acid suppressors might not be as benign as once believed.

In fact, after reviewing the records of nearly 65,000 people who were hospitalized, the researchers found that the rate of hospital-acquired pneumonia was 30 percent higher among people on acid-suppressing medications.

"What we found after controlling for other factors is that there was an association between acid-suppressive medications and hospital-acquired pneumonia," said study author Dr. Shoshana Herzig, chief medical resident and a general medical fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Two different classes of medications can reduce acid in the stomach. One class, called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), blocks acid from being pumped into the stomach, according to Dr. Mitchell Cappell, chief of gastroenterology at William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich. The other class, commonly referred to as H2 blockers, also decreases acid in the stomach but is not as effective at reducing acid as a proton pump inhibitor. Both classes of medications are sold as prescription drugs and over-the-counter medicines.

Herzig and her colleagues reviewed data from hospital admissions from 2004 to 2007. All patients included in the study were hospitalized for at least three days, and none were in intensive care units.

Just over half -- 52 percent -- received some sort of acid-suppressing medication to help prevent stress ulcers while they were hospitalized.

After adjusting the data to account for numerous factors -- including the severity and type of illness, whether the hospitalization was for an elective procedure or an urgent condition, and more -- the researchers found that the risk of developing pneumonia in the hospital was 30 percent higher for those on acid blockers.

In a small sub-analysis, the researchers tried to assess the effect of PPIs vs. H2 blockers. Although the analysis suggested that H2 blockers did not increase the risk significantly, Herzig said there were not enough people in the study on both medications for the researchers to reach a definitive, statistically significant conclusion.

She said that several theories might explain how the medications seem to increase the risk of pneumonia.

  • By suppressing acid, more bacteria might be able to flourish and travel to the lungs.
  • Acid might stimulate the cough response, which is one of the body's ways of clearing infectious agents.
  • Acid-suppressive medications might depress immune function.

"I think we have to address whether acid-suppressors should be used in every patient," Cappell said. "They cost money, they have side effects and they're being used all the time for very weak reasons."

However, he said, it's important for people to realize that even though the risk of hospital-acquired pneumonia was increased with acid-suppressors, the overall risk remains low. He said the study's findings also need to be confirmed with additional research.

"Even an uncommon side effect can occur when drugs are used in a lot of people," he said. "I think we have to be careful and not use these drugs indiscriminately."

Both doctors said that anyone taking the drugs for medical conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) need not be concerned. "These findings really just apply to patients who are hospitalized and who are on these medications in the absence of a clear indication for them," Herzig said. Her advice: "Don't stop taking your medications. Discuss any concerns with your physician."

But, for people who are hospitalized, she said, "I think doctors should reconsider the routine prophylactic use of acid-suppressive medications for patients at low risk of stress ulcers."

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more on hospital-acquired pneumonia.



SOURCES: Shoshana Herzig, M.D., chief medical resident and general medicine fellow, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and instructor in medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston; Mitchell Cappell, M.D., chief, gastroenterology, William Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, Mich.; May 27, 2009, Journal of the American Medical Association


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Pennsylvania Secretaries of Health, Education Announce New Grant Initiatives to Curb Childhood Obesity, Boost Physical Activity in Schools
2. HIV prevention program gets a boost from NIMH recovery act funds
3. Cancer Drug May Boost Risk of Gastrointestinal Perforation
4. NASCAR Fans Boost Blood Donations; The American Red Cross Joins 3M and Greg Biffle to Kick off Season Two
5. Big boost for global health called for in IOM report
6. Twitter Boosts CNN Reporter's Fight to Save Her Brother's Life
7. Improper Use of Booster Seats Puts Many Kids at Risk
8. Implanted Defibrillators Boost Long-Term Survival
9. Early Exercise Boosts Outcomes for ICU Patients
10. Proposed E-Cigarette Ban Pushed in the Name of Americas Health Actually a Backdoor Boost to Pharmaceutical Companies
11. Riley Hospital-IU study finds booster car seats not being used appropriately
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Acid-Suppressing Meds May Boost Pneumonia Risks
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... 24, 2017 , ... Element Blue ™, a leading ... strategic partnership with Lucidworks , the company transforming the way people access ... for building powerful enterprise search applications. , Element Blue is a global team ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 24, 2017 , ... i2i Population Health, a national leader ... , “Cary’s broad financial background is an excellent fit for i2i,” ... and day-to-day financial operations skills we need to take the company to the next ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... January 24, 2017 , ... The ... MSC Cruises as part of the line’s 4th Annual MSC True Partnerships’ Awards. ... performing North American travel partners for the year based on overall business growth in ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 24, 2017 , ... Twelve startups ... of the 2017 Cupid's Cup Entrepreneurship Competition. Chaired by Under Armour Founder and ... The entrepreneurs will showcase their businesses on February 6, 2017, at Under Armour’s ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 24, 2017 , ... West’s Health ... annual Solutions Series of webinars will start January 31 with a session about ... of current health and benefits topics, including employee engagement, pricing transparency, population health ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/24/2017)... India , Jan. 24, 2017 Market Research Future has ... Market for Wound Closure Device is growing rapidly and expected to continue ... ... at a CAGR of 5% from 2013 to 2019 and reaching a ... of the forecasted period, 2016-2022 Global Wound Closure Device Market ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... Nev. , Jan. 24, 2017  The ... that specializes in high-value orthopaedic implants, announced the ... today. The OIC Tibial Nail ... tibia. Strategically placed proximal and distal screw holes ... hole that allows dynamization.  The nail is available ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... 2017 Trifecta Clinical , a leading ... Rick Ward to Vice President of Commercial ... also announcing the promotion of Ericka Atkinson ... Rick joins Trifecta from Greenphire where he was ... business development positions within the healthcare industry throughout his ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: