ANCHORAGE — A recent study conducted by professors at Johns Hopkins University indicated a strong correlation between proton pump inhibitor use and long-term kidney damage.

KTVA Alaska reported that the study named Prilosec, Nexium and Prevacid as the main drugs of the PPI class.

Results of the study indicated that PPI users can have a 50% greater risk if developing chronic kidney disease than nonusers.

Lead author of the study, Dr. Morgan Grams assistant professor of epidemiology at Johns Hopkins, suggested the study only indicates correlation. However, he also went on to say, “We found there was an increasing risk associated with an increasing dose. That suggests that perhaps this preserved effect is real.”

As of a 2013 figure, it is estimated that more than 15 million Americans actively use proton pump inhibitors. However, the study determined that nearly 70% of users have been inappropriately prescribed the drug with 25% of users not needing to take the drug at all.

The study issues a stern warning as chronic kidney disease can often lead to kidney failure, a life-threatening condition that requires dialysis treatments and in severe cases a kidney transplant.

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