Brain Health

Bad News About Link Between PPIs and Dementia

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the use of PPIs and the increased risk of chronic kidney disease.

Researchers wanted to be clear – it wasn’t 100% conclusive that taking PPIs would absolutely lead to the disease. However, they did emphasize this was something to be concerned about, as their studies on PPI use indicated many users ended up with the condition.

Well, another another study about PPIs has just been reported, and the evidence supporting the benefits of discontinuing PPI use altogether continues to stack up.

Drug manufacturers really aren’t going to like this.

So what’s going on – what did PPIs do this time? Well, according to a group of researchers in Bonn, Germany it would appear there’s statistical evidence PPI usage has a strong correlation to dementia.

The study was reported in JAMA at the beginning of the week. In the report, German researchers studied 73,000 research participants and concluded those who took PPIs had a 44% higher chance of developing this debilitating condition.

Of the study’s subjects, a majority of them were women and 2,950 of them were habitual users of PPIs; this means they “had at least one prescription for one of the drugs every four or five months over an 18-month period.”

Observing the participants for a seven year period, they saw 29,510 people develop dementia.


Researchers are unclear about the reasoning for this. Britta Haenisch of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Bonn said, “To evaluate cause-and-effect relationships between long-term PPI use and possible effects on cognition in the elderly, randomized, prospective clinical trials are needed.”

For instance, when participants came into the study, it wasn’t yet known if they were at risk of dementia before the study began. As they stated, it might have been those with the need for PPIs were also the ones who displayed a predisposition for dementia in the first place.

Reuters Health reports Haenisch saying,  “Some of the drugs may cross the blood-brain barrier and interact with brain enzymes, or they may be associated with vitamin B-12 deficiency, which may promote neurological damage.”

She then went on to say because of these findings, along with other studies on PPIs, clinicians should be careful when prescribing these to their patients.

Bonn cited a well-known statistic, which proved more than 70% of PPI prescriptions are unnecessary (something I also mentioned in my article about PPI risk).

This gives anyone who takes PPIs regularly all the more reason to try natural alternatives to help relieve their symptoms.

Fortunately for you, I’ve written an article on that too. You can see it here.

There’s something to be learned here – a strict reliance on pharmaceuticals in every instance isn’t always the smartest plan of action.

At least, that’s what we’re determining more and more often here at Heath As It Ought To Be.

Talk soon,

Dr. Wiggy