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coming off omeprazole after long term use

(22 Posts)
EkwaNimitee Wed 27-Jan-21 09:59:52

Has anyone successfully come off omeprazole or any similar ppi after taking it for years? I've taken it for acid reflux more or less since it began to be prescribed and it was a godsend until recently, when I started to suspect I had developed a low stomach acid problem-- bloating, loss of appetite etc. This can happen with long term use of ppis and/or simply old age. My doctor organised an endoscopy (results fine) for which I had to stop taking the omeprazole beforehand. I haven't taken it for 2 months now but recently I've begun to suffer acidity again. I don't know whether that's acid rebound and things will settle down again or whether I actually have too much acid production and will have to resume the omeprazole again. I'm reluctant to do so because I think it was responsible for the indigestion problems due to low acid that I mentioned above and apparently there are other side effects of long term use as well such as inflammatory bowel disease.
I have an appointment with my GP next week and I'm awaiting the re-booking of a cancelled colonoscopy so I'm not asking for medical advice, just wanting to know other people's experiences, good or bad.

Mollygo Wed 27-Jan-21 10:08:06

I took Lansoprazole for quite a while after an endoscopy which revealed inflammation. I took it for about 8 years, then I stopped taking it after reading that it might contribute to the onset of Alzheimer’s. Now I avoid certain foods and always have antacids in the house, though I rarely use them.
Hope your Doc can ease your mind.

Alexa Wed 27-Jan-21 10:15:08

Yes. I reduced my intake of omeprazole and now take it onlyh when I have eaten unwisely usually too late in the evening.

Reducing omeprazole meant I now take an awful lot more Gaviscon liquid.

I find my reflux problem is almost gone when I lay off sweets, cakes, and large meals. Sometimes all I need to get rid of excess acid is a small bowl of oatmeal porridge with Oatly.

GagaJo Wed 27-Jan-21 10:24:58

I am supposed to take Omeprazole daily but don't like regularly taking any medication.

Which foods are more likely to cause flare ups?

Mollygo Wed 27-Jan-21 10:56:20

GagaJo For me, large meals of any kind, spicy foods, too much sweet stuff, fried foods-although stir fried veg don’t cause problems, and too much celery or grapefruit juice.
If I avoid those I don’t really even need antacids, but there’s always a pack of Setlersin the cupboard. I like Gaviscon, but the bottle was so rarely used it passed its use by date.

EkwaNimitee Wed 27-Jan-21 12:51:59

GagaJo For me, fatty rich meals, very spicy food, acid fruits..I can really only eat papayas and pears. My favourite apple crumble did for me the other week . And too much food. Like Alexa, I am using a lot more Gaviscon, rather as a cure after the event unlike omeprazole which was used as a preventative.
I'm not getting so much reflux now, more a burning in the gut. I'm doing pranayama deep breathing exercises which are supposed to strengthen the diaphragm muscles. Perhaps they are working.

Septimia Wed 27-Jan-21 13:04:30

Tomatoes, fresh or in other foods, and citrus fruits are the things that don't suit me. Chocolate was on the list of things that might be problematic - fortunately it doesn't seem to affect me too much!

beverly10 Wed 27-Jan-21 13:08:58

Not just what you eat. Finance worries /stressful job /family problems.?

Tea3 Wed 27-Jan-21 13:13:13

I had further stomach problems (what I would describe as belly ache!) after taking omeprazole daily for several years. The inevitable (third in ten years) gastroscopy was fine. I asked if I could try a different PPI and was put on Pantoprazole. Things improved. I suspect the cellulose type coating on the 20mg omeprazole capsule caused the problem. Pantoprazole is supplied in tablet form.

Sparklefizz Wed 27-Jan-21 13:14:14

This article gives a great deal of information and a list of foods that commonly trigger heartburn and acid reflux.

PPIs (Proton Pump Inhibitors) such as Omeprazole, taken long term allow a number of nasty gut bacteria to proliferate causing other gut problems - bloating, gas, fatigue, intestinal overgrowth of bad bugs amongst other symptoms.

I refused to take them and can control my GERD with diet and a homeopathic remedy called Natrum Phos 30c (available from health shops and online). I had Oesophagitis quite badly but solved the problem myself.

Sparklefizz Wed 27-Jan-21 13:14:37

Sorry, forgot to give the link to the article. Here it is.

Luckygirl Wed 27-Jan-21 13:18:13

I discussed this with consultant just the other week. His view was that I was better to take it than not. He said that there was some evidence that it might interfere with calcium absorption, but that as I have been under care for osteoporosis for many years and I am being monitored and treated properly for that, then I should stay on the omeprazole.

Mine are in a form that dissolves in the mouth and he suggested that I could try breaking them in half and trying to slowly reduce the dose if I wanted to, but that he did not think it was necessary to do that.

Tea3 Wed 27-Jan-21 13:23:12

Luckygirl, yes, I’ve been told the same. Women are more susceptible to oesophageal cancer than men so best not to irritate it too regularly. I’m interested to hear omeprazole comes in a different form to capsules.

kgnw28225 Wed 27-Jan-21 13:36:12

I have a Hiatus hernia for which I was perscribed omeprazole tablets about six years ago, I have taken 20mg a day ever since. In 2019 I had another endoscopy, they said that I had a large hiatus hernia and a recent bleed. I am 74 years. My GP upped the dose to 40 mg per day for about six months, then told me to go back to 20mg. Still have problems with various foods. Our GP surgery is very difficult to approach.

Casdon Wed 27-Jan-21 13:53:39

One thing I discovered was that taking multivitamin tablets, particularly the ones with iron caused stomach pain for me, I now take them at lunchtime rather than in the evening, which has helped.

Curlywhirly Wed 27-Jan-21 13:56:38

I took PPIs for about 4 years. I decided to try to cut down and then stop taking them. Strangely, the excess acid didn't come back - though I do think retiring from work played a large part of it; I think my reflux was caused by stress and leaving work was a huge relief to me. If I occasionally get reflux I just take some liquid Gaviscon, works for me.

B9exchange Wed 27-Jan-21 14:54:29

I was put on Omeprazole 25 years ago for 'silent' acid reflux after a gastroscopy, the consultant said I would have to stay on it for life. Although I rarely get any pain, the reflux has affected my vocal cords, confirmed on laryngoscopy, and I can no longer sing in a choir, which is sad. My husband has a confirmed hiatus hernia, again for him no pain, but gives him a persistent cough.

Jaxjacky Wed 27-Jan-21 15:15:08

I can’t take a daily dose of omeprazole, I’m allowed 10mg every 5 days or so, I use Gaviscon advance at bedtime and ordinary Gaviscon as and when. Triggers for me are fizzy drinks, fresh tomatoes, fresh citrus, some foods still surprise me. I have some Pepcid complete, but eking it out as it’s difficult to find.

GagaJo Wed 27-Jan-21 15:39:03

I used to be on a different drug that was much more expensive and did seem to be better. It seemed to have a long lasting effect, so that long term, I could use less. My GP changed it because it was so expensive.

Tea3 Wed 27-Jan-21 15:47:42

kgns28225 ‘Our GP surgery is very difficult to approach.‘ so too ours, and that was before the pandemic.

LilyJ Wed 27-Jan-21 15:48:51

Have hiatus hernia and reflux, last year found I was gluten sensitive and have been gluten free since. Great improvement in the reflux , so glad I tried gf.

Sparklefizz Wed 27-Jan-21 16:44:32

This is info from the Mayo Clinic in the US.
Although PPIs have had an encouraging safety profile, recent studies regarding the long-term use of PPI medications have noted potential adverse effects, including risk of fractures, pneumonia, Clostridium difficile, diarrhea, hypomagnesemia, vitamin B12 deficiency, chronic kidney disease, and dementia.

1 Feb 2018
Proton Pump Inhibitors: Review of Emerging Concerns - Mayo ...