Long-term PPI use: does it increase the risk of dementia?

Recent studies have been looking into a proton pump inhibitors-dementia link. In a first, new research analysed data from over 5,500 long-term PPI users.

What you should know about the possible link between PPI use and dementia:

PPIs: A questionable link with dementia

In recent years, several studies have focussed on the possible link between the use of PPIs and the incidence of dementia. There are no clear results to date. The cumulative use of proton pump inhibitors and their influence on neurodegenerative diseases has also hardly been researched to date. A recent study has published data on this topic.

Large study on long-term PPI use

The study analysed data from over 5,500 people who had been taking PPIs for a long period of time. Interestingly, prolonged use was defined as at least 112 days and a maximum of over 20 years. After a five-year follow-up, it was analysed whether the use of acid inhibitors was associated with an increased risk of dementia.

Can long-term use of PPIs increase the risk of dementia?

The study authors came to the conclusion that long-term use of proton pump inhibitors does not appear to lead to an increased incidence of dementia. However, the study data also suggest that this may no longer be true for use over 4.4 years. In the study population, the risk of dementia increased by 33% under this condition. Further studies are needed to confirm the results and understand the correlations.

Take aways for medical practice

In this study, the medium to long-term use of PPIs was not generally associated with an increased risk of dementia. However, taking the medication over several years could increase the incidence of neurodegenerative diseases. This hypothesis, which is based on the data obtained in this study, should be further researched and evaluated.