If Anxious Check Drugs: PPIs and Diuretics

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November 10, 2014 | 6 Comments


  1. Somewhere back in seventh-grade science class I think we learned our stomachs were full of acid for a reason: to digest our food. It stands to reason that the more efficiently a drug turns off the acid pump, the more trouble it could cause. Far too many people take these pills every day, long term.

    It’s even scarier how many are put on them by doctors for “prevention” — before they even have any stomach upset. A lot of the pain doctors in my area issue a script for omeprazole along with the first script for painkillers without even waiting to see if the pain pills upset the patient’s stomach.

    I’m no doctor, but the list of vitamins, minerals etc. that can’t be properly digested when you’re on proton pump inhibitors is alarming. There’s calcium — the link to osteoporosis is real — and vitamin B12, a shortage of which can cause all kinds of nerve and brain damage. The next cohort of people to hit age 65 will include a lot of folks who have been popping these pills for twenty years, and they may be in much worse health in old age than they ever expected.

    I wonder if one reason the problem stays under the radar is alcohol. Heavy drinkers tend to have some of these problems anyway, particularly B12 deficiencies. And heavy drinkers are top customers for acid-indigestion remedies. When one of them shows up with serious deficiencies, the booze gets all the blame, and the Nexium or Prilosec gets off scot-free.

  2. I totally echo Johanna’s post. I was put on Omeprazole for three years for reflux! In that time, I developed debilitating panic attacks, ectopic heart beats and hypocalcemia. I have to take calcium and D3 daily as my parathyroids were destroyed during botched thyroid surgery. There was no mention of the need to counteract the D3/calcium with magnesium either, but that’s endocrinology for you – always far more interested in Diabetes and dismissive of poor hypothyroid sufferers.

    When my legs gave way and I passed out, I insisted on full blood panels and discovered I was b12, iron and zinc deficient too. PPIs are very efficient at removing stomach acid, but why in the world would you want to? As it happens, I had reflux caused by low stomach acid, not high, and never should have been on these drugs for three harmful years.

    I have no words for how much I despise them and the pushers who foist them on us. That’s what they are, drug pushers.

  3. I was on Prilosec for 20 years for GERD! Decided to stop taking due to published SE of dementia, osteoporosis,renal failure. Well it has been awful, I have experienced the worst anxiety attacks in which I’ve never had not a anxious person! I have been to the ER thinking I was having a heart attack. I felt like I was gonna pass out, Hands shake, tingling in my face and limbs, muscle tightness all over can’t relax feels like a constant state of fight or flight syndrome! I’m 2 weeks off the drug and still having these symptoms almost daily also heart palpitations! I’m miserable scared to drive because its happened few times while driving had to take off work because having attacks at work!! I want to feel better. I’m praying it has not done permanent damage just wandering if it will go away and when!!! Help! Does anyone have anything encouraging regarding whether these symptoms will subside. I wouldn’t suggest this drug for anyone!

    • I had to write back because I’m currently scouring the internet for answers and i came across your post. I took nexium for one year and currently tapering off (tomorrow is my last day) because of the dementia and kidney studies. I’m experiencing a lot of similar problems- anxiety, internal tremoring all over, but especially my legs, tingling and cramping in my legs and quadricep weakness. I had bloodwork done this week and so far everything is normal (vitamins b and d still pending). I cannot believe this crazy withdrawal! I also shake prior to falling asleep and when waking…

    • Hi Theresa

      I have just come across your post and it is exactly what I am going through at the moment down to a T. I am just wondering how long your symptoms stayed with you and how you are now? I was on lansoprazole for 16 years and tapered off them slowly but started the same symptoms as you, please tell me it goes away.

  4. I took Nexium for years-probably more than 10. I had gone to my daughters for 2 weeks and kept forgetting to take them. The night before I was going home I remembered I had not been taking them and took one. Within 30 minutes I was having a full blown panic attack. Flight or fight reaction. Walked the floor for hours. Being a nurse I knew what I was having, not why. Did not even think it could be nexium as I had taken it for years. I had never had anything like that in my life!! I went home and continued to have them. Went to my medical doctor who put me on Zoloft even though I explained I had not been nervous or upset about anything. After about 2 weeks of them, my friend, who is a pharmacist, saw me taking the “purple pill” and told me there had been a lot on the news recently about problems with the pills so I might need to stop taking them. He did not remember what the complaints were, so I went on line, not thinking panic attacks and low and behold – panic attacks were the main complaints! Needles to say, I stopped taking them. The attacks continued for about 2 or 3 weeks I think. Each less than the other one and did completely stop after a few weeks. I would like to know how to find out about whether I have low acid production instead of high acid production as the burning has come back after a few years.

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