The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced this week that they will be requiring new warnings to be added to the labels of Nexium, Prolisec, Prevacid and other similar medications over growing concerns about bone fracture risks. The extremely popular class of heartburn and acid reflux medications known as proton pump inhibitors or PPI’s, have recently been linked to an increased risk of bone fractures by a report published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.
According to the report the medications may significantly raise the risk of bone fractures in postmenopausal women taking the medications. The risks seem to be associated with the long term use of the medications, but the FDA is also requiring new warnings for drugs intended for short term use. Fractures were most commonly seen in the hip, wrist and spine.
This week 35 Houston-area women filed lawsuits against Nexium maker, AstraZeneca, claiming that have suffered broken ribs, ankles, and feet after taking the drug. The plaintiffs in the suit claim that Nexium caused bone deterioration which lead to fractures.
Patients concerned about potential fracture risks should consult their physician. For more information please see the FDA’s Saftey Alert here and report any adverse affects related to the use of PPI’s through the FDA’s MedWatch website here.