Feedback on Nexium Side Effects and Usage, page 38

Nexium Side Effects

If you’ve used Nexium, please help others by sharing your feedback. What would you tell your best friend about this product? Please remember that we do not give medical advice. That is for your local health care provider, who is familiar with your medical history.
Subj: Stopping PPIs
Date: 1/30/2010
Everyone who is considering Nexium should read the link Stopping PPIs. I had stomach erosion’s and gastritis with pain and bloating but no apparent reflux or heartburn. I was on Nexium for 6 month and went off (under doctors advisement) because I felt great! Two days later I started suffering horrible heartburn. I tried using OTC remedies with no avail. Now I’m back on the Nexium, very concerned about my future health after this Nexium drug therapy. I’m now between a rock and a hard place. I’m a very healthy, yoga-practicing, exercise devoted female. Not overweight and a healthy eater. Now what???


AskDocWeb: Sorry Laura, looks like they took that link down.

Subj: Barrett’s Esophagus
Date: 1/30/2010
I was just diagnosed with Barrett’s esophagus. I’m a 64 yr old female. Prior to the diagnosis, I did not experience reflux, just occasional indigestion. But had been tested for a sharp pain/tenderness on the third rib from bottom, right side. Dr did xrays, ultrasound, colonoscopy, MRI, stress tests, electrocario. All were normal. After endiscopy, Dr said everything was normal. And, a few days later her nurse called to say the biopsy was negative for cancer. Two days alter, she called to say I have Barretts. This bothers me tremendously. Barrett’s cells are bright red and rough. They gave no explanation why didn’t she see it or why didn’t they mention Barretts when they called about the biopsy (?).

Dr said I need a Proton pump inhibitors, ediscopy in a year, gave list of what foods, drinks to avoid. She prescribed 20 mg Prilosec. After taking for five days, I had extreme chest pains, rapid heart beat, dry mouth, headaches, blurry vision, etc. I met with the Dr’s nurse. She said Dr told me to switch to Nexium. She also thought it might help to take raw apple cider vinegar. She did say there was no evidence of damage other than Barretts. I took Nexium just once, in middle of night I woke up sweating, dry mouth and nasal passages so bad my nose started to bleed. So I stopped taking it. I am eating nothing but bananas, apples, oatmeal, lean meat, peas, baked potato (plain); drinking only water and a occasional chamomile tea; elevated bed; frequent little meals.

Since the endoscopy I have had more extreme chest / back pain than ever. Cannot even bend over. I sit on couch all evening with heating pad. It even hurts to breathe deeply. My regular Dr said to take a muscle relaxer or Advil. Questions: 1) I am really scared about taking these Nexium or similar drugs. Do any of these have less side effects? 2) Is there any alternative that works? Pharmacist recommended Gaviscon. 2) What is really safe to eat and drink? I cannot go out or to dinner with friends without worrying. 3) What could cause this unbearable back pain? It never seems to end. 4) Is my future only pain and bananas? Thank you for any help.


AskDocWeb: There are many people who say that Nexium saved their throat and are thrilled with the results. Protonix has also been reported to work well for Barrett’s Esophagus. It would be convenient to say that there is a reflux diet but unfortunately we all react differently to different foods. The most commonly reported foods that cause problems are alcohol, black pepper, chili, chili powder, citrus fruits, pineapple, coffee, garlic, spicy foods, tea, vinegar, tomatoes, and products made from tomatoes. Although people with Barrett’s Esophagus have an increased risk of esophageal cancer, only a small number actually develop cancer.

Subj: New long-term side effects of Nexium?
Date: 2/1/2010
I have been taking Nexium since 2003. Every time I miss a dose, my heartburn acts up. I had an endoscopy done in 2008 and everything was normal. However I still cannot get off Nexium. The doctor still cannot find a resolution. I want to avoid taking Nexium for life. I read the other posts about taking Nexium long-term but they are all from 3 or 4 years ago. Has anything changed in terms of long-term use side effects?


AskDocWeb: According to AstraZeneca’s website, “atrophic gastritis has been noted occasionally in gastric corpus biopsies from patents treated long-term with Nexium.” Atrophic gastritis, also known as Type A or Type B Gastritis, is a chronic inflammation of the stomach lining leading to a loss of the cells that produce hydrochloric acid and pepsin, which are required for proper digestion. So far we have been unable to discover what percentage of Nexium users experience this long-term effect.

Subj: Hip replacement surgery at 37
Date: 2/1/2010
I was on Nexium for 5 years staight and it worked great for acid reflux! However, I started having hip problems at age 36 and was diagnosed with avascular necrosis which lead to several painful operations and then a final bi lateral hip replacement surgery at the grand old age of 37. I know of a few others that took acid reflux medicines who also lost a hip. They did every test they could think of and found no reasons that would cause me to have AVN in both hips. I am not over weight and my blood profiles have always been super. Be very careful with these drugs and don’t take them everyday, if possible! You do not want to go through the hell that my family and I went through. Pretty bad when you can’t play football with your boys!!!


Subj: How long to start working?
Date: 2/2/2010
How long does it take for Nexium to start working, and relieve my pain from possible stomach ulcers.. Three weeks and I feel little difference.


AskDocWeb: Proton pump inhibitors like Nexium have the longest delay in working because they block the final step of acid secretion in the stomach. Healing of an ulcer with the help of Nexium may take up to 8 weeks. In the mean time there are other acid reflux medications that may be taken while on Nexium. The most popular categories of acid reflux medication are as follows:

1. Non-absorbable antacids such as Maalox or Mylanta neutralize stomach acid but are not absorbed by the stomach or intestine. These are the mildest form of acid reflux medication and usually have few side effects but may cause diarrhea and may reduce the body’s ability to absorb calcium.

2. Absorbable antacids such as Alka-Seltzer, Tums, Rolaids, and baking soda, are a little more effective as an acid reflux medication than non-absorbable antacids. Since they are calcium-based and absorbable these antacids do not prevent calcium absorption but they can cause constipation. In rare cases, long-term use of calcium carbonate as an acid reflux medication has caused elevated levels of calcium in the blood (hypercalcemia), which can lead to kidney failure.

3. H2 blockers or stomach acid inhibitors such as Tagamet, Pepcid, Zantac, Axid, and others, slow down the production of stomach acid by blocking one important producer of acid called “histamine2.” These stomach acid inhibitors may take up to 90 minutes to work and may interfere with other medications. Their side effects include headache, diarrhea, dizziness, or rash. Long-term use of H2 blockers has been shown to possibly cause mental decline and dementia later in life.

Subj: Time to take Nexium
Date: 2/9/2010
Is it good to take nexium in the morning as soon as I wake up or eat a very light breakfast, wait about an hour and take nexium.


AskDocWeb: According to the 2010 Physician’s Desk Reference, Nexium should be taken at least one hour before meals.

Subj: Excessive burping
Date: 2/10/2010
I have been taking Nexium for about six months. Recently, I have started burping excessively in the early morning when I get out of bed and again in the early evening until about bedtime. My doctor recently switched me to one dosage in the morning, and one in the evening, but this hasn’t helped. Could this be a side effect of Nexium?


AskDocWeb: Burping is not listed as one of the officially recognized side effects. It could be a rare side effect but it is much more likely to be caused by swallowing air.

Subj: Can I just stop
Date: 2/17/2010
I have been on Nexium for 1 year now, everyday, can I just stop taking this medicine abruptly or must I be weened off of it?


AskDocWeb: There is no documented need to taper off of Nexium but since it is a prescription drug talk to your doctor first. There may be a possibility of rebound reflux.

Subj: Cost of Nexium
Date: 2/18/2010
I have been on medication for gerd for 27 years!!! First Pepcid, then Previcid and now Nexium for over ten years. Instructions for all say not to take for over a brief period of time. I am seriously considering stopping the Nexium cold turkey. Ordered a refill yesterday and it cost me $351 (after insurance) for 90 days. Incentive enough for me.


Subj: Long term problems?
Date: 2/21/2010
I’ve been taking Nexium for years at lease 6 years and what are the long term problems?


AskDocWeb: In a small number of cases long-term use of Nexium has been reported to cause diarrhea, abdominal pain, bowel irregularity, atrophic gastritis, constipation, anemia, vitamin B12 deficiency, and changes in weight (a decrease for some and an increase for others). In less than one percent of users, tachycardia has been noted. That’s an abnormal condition where the heart contracts regularly but at a rate greater than 100 beats per minute. The reduced secretion of gastric acid and pepsin produced by Nexium can reduce the absorption of vitamin B-12 however, clinically significant vitamin B-12 deficiency is unlikely unless there is prolonged use (2 years or more).

Subj: Pain in the lower abdomen
Date: 2/21/2010
Hi, I went to see my doctor for severe/sharp shooting pain in the lower abdominal region and gas/bloating. After a short discussion he was convinced it was heartburn/GERD and then proceeded to prescribe Nexium 40mg, once daily. Here’s the thing: I’ve never had heartburn in my life and I don’t suffer from any of the symptoms of GERD except occasional gas. Just after the first dose I experienced a little nausea/dizziness but after that it went away. Since then, my lower abdominal pain has show no signs of going away – and seems to be slowly getting worse after 4 months of Nexium treatment. I told my doctor it didn’t seem to be helping at 2 months but he told me not to come back for a year. What should I do? I don’t want to be taking a drug if it’s the wrong one. As best as I can tell, my symptoms are most related to what may be signs of an intestinal ulcer (which can be caused by an H.Pylori infection). Is there a possibility that Nexium might aggravate the ulcer symptoms or does Nexium truly double as an effective treatment for stomach and GI ulcers as some claim? To stop or not to stop.


AskDocWeb: The majority of peptic and duodenal ulcers are caused by infection by H. pylori. When esomeprazole (Nexium) is combined with the antibiotics clarithromycin and amoxicillin (or metronidazole in penicillin-hypersensitive patients), it is an effective treatment for the eradication Helicobacter pylori and it only takes 7-14 days. You may want to as your doctor about taking a simple breath test for detecting an active H. Pylori infection. It will take you 4 weeks to prepare for the test but the procedure only takes 20 to 30 minutes. Read more feedback about Nexium.
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