(Annie Lennox/ Medical News Today) — Long-term use of certain prescription acid reflux medications is linked to an elevated risk of dementia, according to a recent study.
Acid reflux happens when a muscle in the lower end of the esophagus relaxes at the wrong time and allows stomach acid to back up into the esophagus. When this happens frequently, patients can develop gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which can lead to esophageal cancer.
Currently, drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are the first-line therapy for GERD. While the drugs are only recommended for short-term use of 4-8 weeks, chronic use is common.
Some studies have reported that chronic PPI use is linked to health conditions, including stroke, cardiovascular disease, and chronic kidney disease. While some research indicates that PPI use increases dementia risk, others suggest it does not. (…)