(HEALIO.com) — According to an article citing the American Journal of Gastroenterology that appears on the Gastroenterology page of Healio.com, the risk of contracting COVID-19 increases when patients take two doses of proton pump inhibitors (PPI) daily. PPI drugs reduce acid accumulation in the abdomen leading to acid reflux. The results from the study indicate that taking only one dose of a PPI medication could raise the patient’s chances of contracting COVID-19 compared to people who do not use PPI regularly. Physicians and researchers from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA, determined that the results of the scientific study accounted for variations among participants, which might otherwise invalidate the test. The researchers reaffirmed the belief in the medical community that PPI should be prescribed only when a doctor determines that PPI medications could be administered at the lowest possible doses.
The study was an online survey of 53,130 participants, which ran from May 3, 2020, to June 24, 2020. The study aimed to investigate if PPI medicines might increase the risk of COVID-19 in Americans living in community settings. The researchers found that 3,267 of the patients examined tested positive for COVID-19 and were symptomatic. About 650 of the respondents indicated that they experienced new complications of abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Statistical analysis based on the replies indicated that people who took PPI drugs were at a lower risk of developed COVID-19 symptoms involving the gastrointestinal tract compared with positive COVID-19 patients who did not take any PPIs.
The doctors who performed the study cautioned patients to consult their physicians for guidance relating to stopping PPI regimes. The researchers still believe that PPIs work and should be used because the benefits most often outweigh the risks. The researchers also reinforced their opinion that PPIs should be used in the lowest dose possible to avoid complications. They also said that alternative acid-reducing drugs should be considered as a replacement for PPIs.
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