An integrative approach to GERD includes a variety of evidence-based options including:
- Lifestyle changes
- Nutrition and exercise
- Botanical (herbal) medicine
- Mind-body therapy
- Traditional Chinese medicine
Risks of prolonged acid suppression therapy:
- Increased risk of community-acquired pneumonia
- Increased risk of community-acquired Clostridium difficile infection
- Increased risk of bone fracture
- Decreased absorption of iron, specifically non-heme iron
- Decreased absorption of vitamin B12
- Decreased absorption of calcium
- Gastric hyperplasia (due to gastrin stimulation)
Be cautious using acid suppression in:
- Patients with iron deficiency anemia (unless due to bleeding ulcers)
- Elderly individuals at risk of community-acquired pneumonia
- Children for long periods of time due to risk of gastric hyperplasia
- Post-menopausal women, or other individuals at risk for fractures
Rebound hyperacidity can occur when discontinuing a PPI and last for 10-14 days even if GERD has resolved. A suggested plan to help patients taper off PPIs is included in the downloads section on the right.
Please see the downloads section for more detailed clinician and patient information.
Disclaimer: This information is for general education. Please work with your health care practitioner to use it in the best way possible to promote your health.