Heartburn Drugs Can Increase Bone Fracture Risk

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As a dentist, I am very concerned about digestive acids from gastric reflux contributing to dental decay. However, the FDA has recently warned that long term use (greater than 1 year) of proton pump inhibitors (Aciphex, Dexilant, Nexium, Prevacid, Prilosec, Protonix, Vimovo, and Zegerid ) can increase the risk of bone fractures. These drugs can lead to low levels of certain vital vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B12 and magnesium. Ideally, for those suffering with gastric reflux (heart burn), short term drug therapy should allow you to modify your diet, increasing fresh fruits and vegetables, and decreasing fat (meat/fried food) and refined carbohydrates (junk food/high sugar/sodas). With an improved diet and exercise, milder over the counter remedies may be used to control gastric reflux.