Proton pump inhibitors

If you’ve ever suffered from gastro-intestinal reflux disease (GERD) or another similar digestive issue, then you are very well familiarized with the pain of dealing with acid in your stomach and esophagus. In the past, conditions like this were difficult to treat and most doctors would advise you to simply take a Tums or to just deal with it. However, thanks to advances in medical research, doctors now have a wide variety of medications at their disposal that can not only limit the amount of stomach acid in the human body, but can virtually eliminate it at will.

A proton pump, is the mechanism in your body that produces stomach acid. It creates a simple interchange of molecules and pumps the acid into your stomach so that you can digest and break down foods. The problem is that in some people, this mechanism is unable to be regulated by the body and produces far too much stomach acid. As a result, these unfortunate people constantly feel the pain of this stomach acid eating aware at their stomach and esophageal lining. What a proton pump inhibitor does is to minimize the amount of stomach acid produced by the human body in order for the body to resume functioning as normal.

Although turning off this mechanism can cause digestive problems, the pro’s far outweigh the cons, especially when consider the long term effects of stomach acid eating away at their body. Using a proton pump inhibitor effectively blocks the production of stomach acid for a period of up to 24 hours. This means you don’t have to constantly worry about reacting to the pain of stomach acid and instead can focus on prevention.

In the past, H2 blockers were used to block histamine receptors, which provided the same result using a different method. The proton pump inhibitors are much more effective and not only last longer, but take longer to kick into action. As a result, you will have to make sure you take them at the same day every day so there are no lapses in coverage. There are nearly half a dozen pharmaceutical brands of PPI’s, but most of them work the same way. There isn’t a benefit to a specific brand either, although some of them are broken down and metabolized differently by the liver.

If you have been suffering from ulcers as a result of GERD or another related issue, then using a proton pump inhibitor will give your body time to heal. Although they won’t treat the cause of the problem, it is an effective enough solution to provide you with the comfort of being able to live a normal life. The pills have very few short-term side effects and can be used with many other medicines without worry. However, it must be noted that there have been only a small amount of long-term studies conducted, so make sure to check with your doctor if you notice any issues or side effects.

Although gastric diseases and associated issues can be painful, knowing that there is help in the form of PPI’s is a great relief for many people. Dealing with the pain of a disease is difficult, but knowing there is no way to treat it is even worse. Thanks to medical research, people’s lives are improving and diseases like this will soon be a thing of the past. When in doubt if a certain proton pump inhibitor is for you, check with the manufacturers websites for more information, including side effects, risk factors, and treatment options. If nothing else, you can ask your doctor for advice on which one will work best for you.

Last updated on Dec 12th, 2009 and filed under Drugs and Medications. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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