What are the Side Effects of Omeprazole
Omeprazole is a proton-pump inhibitor (PPI) medication, a type of drug that reduces the quantity of gastric acid produced by the stomach. It is used to treat gastroesophageal reflux, ulcers, esophagitis and in infections caused by Helicobacter Pylori, a bacterium found in the stomach that can provoke gastritis and ulcers.
Nowadays many people take Omeprazole and it is considered one of the most important medications in the basic health system. However, although Omeprazole is very popular and it's available as generic medication, its prolongued use in high doses can have contraindications and side effects to our organism. In this OneHowTo article we explain what the side effects of Omeprazole are.
First of all, Omeprazole shouldn't be taken as preventive medication. Proton inhibitors are medications with very precise indications that need to be supervised by a specialist. It's necessary that a doctor diagnoses some ailment before starting to take this drug. If you take Omeprazole without prescription you need to bear in mind that your dose can't exceed 20 milligrams per day. Anyway you should inform your doctor about any heartburns you've suffered during the last three months or any of these symptoms: daze, lack of breath, sweating or dizziness.
People with liver failure can only take between 10 and 20 milligrams per day of this drug. In any case, you must consult your doctor before taking any so you can discard any possible side effects. Make sure you know how long Omeprazole takes to work depending on the reason you are taking it, as you may take longer than expected to notice significant improvements.
If you're allergic or hypersensitive to Omeprazole, to other drugs from the same type or to its components you should consult your doctor. You also need to tell him whether you're taking any other medication such as antibiotics, anticoagulants, diuretics, iron supplements etc.
Beside these counter-indications, the prolongued use without supervision of this drug can cause side effects. It is associated to interstitial nephritis, a disorder that reduces the ability of kidneys to filter debris and additional liquid from our body, which can cause damage in the heart, brain, lungs and other organs.
Late studies determine that Omeprazole reduces the absorption of the vitamin B12. Gastric acid is essential for the liberation of this vitamin and when Omeprazole is taken, the secretion of stomach acids is reduced. When this happens, vitamin B12 is not completely absorbed. The lack of vitamin B12 can cause neurologic damage, dementia, anemia and other complications.
Hypomagnesaemia is also associated to the excessive use of Omeprazole. It is a disorder in which magnesium levels in blood decrease considerably and this can produce an insufficient quantity of gastric acids in the stomach. This will make intestinal absorption much more difficult, which will affect the absorption of magnesium.
Taking Omeprazole also increases the risk of intestinal infections. The function of Omeprazole is to reduce acid secretions, and due to this bacterial flora can be affected. This can favour the growth of bacteria that can cause infections.
Reducing intestinal acid can also alter the absorption of calcium, for this reason high doses of Omeprazole and long-term treatments can produce risk of fractures on hips, wrists and spine, mostly in the elderly. In these cases it's important to revise the calcium ingestion.
Before taking any drug remember to consult it with your doctor. If you prefer treating heartburn in a more natural way, we recommend you our article the best natural alternatives to Omeprazole.
This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.
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