Harvard Health Letter

Staying healthy while using PPIs

Be mindful of risks for fracture, low B12, and a spike in stomach acid.

Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) help treat symptoms of heartburn, but these powerful medications also carry their share of risks. "The risks are for long-term use," says Dr. Jacqueline Wolf, a Harvard Medical School associate professor. "Three months of use should be okay, but if someone needs a PPI longer than that, a doctor should be supervising use."

Here are the top four risks you should keep in mind when using PPIs, and how to minimize each.

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