What’s This Pill For, Anyway?

That’s what you should ask your doctor if you are taking any unidentified pills. Follow this link to new evidence that proton pump inhibitors increase risk of fractures, especially in the elderly.

These drugs cut down stomach acid, and they are good for people who have ulcers or bad acid reflux. Otherwise, I suspect, they are a drug in search of a disease. I often ask patients who take these drugs if they have any stomach trouble. They say no. They say they never had stomach trouble. They don’t know why they are on these pills.

I’m going to make the effort to update doctors on the patient’s symptoms, and respectfully ask if the prescriptions can be changed to ‘as needed’. They work pretty fast, and that’s a way to keep the benefit and cut the risk.