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Oesophageal Patients Association
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I stopped taking Omeprozole a week ago as I was worried about long term side effects,

Now I'm worried that any acid reflux I may get will go unnoticed and may damage me. I'm due an endoscopy next week, any advice please

17 Replies

Hi Nuttytreacle

You don't say how long you have been taking omeprazole, I have been taking it since my op 6yrs ago, i have tried twice to come off but in my case i can assure you that the benefits far away the negatives and it's better to keep taking them. i use to be on 20mg once in the morning but for the past 12mths my doctor has increased this to 20mg morning and 20mg night time and i have found i sleep better with very little acid reflux if at all. I had an ivor lewis procedure and the only problem i have is lack of energy which i am trying to tackle by taking iron supplement. hope this helps.



Hi I've been taking Omeprozole for just over2 years, I've been off it a week and I don't seem to have had any episode of reflux. I'm guessing I'd know! This morning I woke with a sore throat which has lingered all day, hopefully just a coincidence, I take creon which makes me dry first thing,



I stopped taking omeprazole five years ago, I had my Ivan Lewis 12 years ago, I two was worried about the long-term effects , I only suffer with acid when sleeping so I now have an electric bed which I elevate and do not eat two hours before I retire in the evening, I find this works just as well as a tablet.

Hope this helps you.




I'm now 7 years out of surgery and still taking the PPI and have not shown any side affects or any other issues that can be put down to taking PPI's.

What long term side affects are you concerned about as there are none that I know about that would cause me to stop taking them, completely the opposite as I know what will happen if I do stop..

Everyone is different but I know that for me it would be the wrong thing to do, this is from an experience of not taking them with me on a trip.

Also talking to other patients in our support group show that stopping is not an option, changing the dose and / or version of PPI can be if any issues may be considered by your specialist team.

Please, please talk to your consultant / CNS before stopping them as this may cause more long term issues for you if you do stop.

Kindest regards,

Dave C


Hi Dave

The side affects I heard of was the possibility of developing Osteoarthritis so I went to see my GP and I'm now on a Vitamin D supplement but I have also read that taking Omeprazole or Lansoprazole as I do can lead to heart problems. that's the one that concern's me I cant take a supplement for that. Any Idea's.

Kind Regards



Hi Steve,

I do tend to go to my specialist consultant rather than my GP on things related to my OG condition, mainly because they may not always fully understand the condition we have.

I asked for full blood test last year to see if I needed to take any supplements but all levels were normal so I don't take any extra, down to a balanced diet and fresh air I believe.

Osteoarthritis in my knees is down to the years of football and long distance running damage and is no worse now than before.

Heart problems related to PPI's (I take Lansoprazole) are not something that I have come across within our patient group, but I will ask around.

Our team always advises a good diet (which is eating the wrong / bad things to normal people) and gentle exercise will ensure heart problems stay away.

Do speak to your specialist team before stopping the PPI, they will be able to put your concerns to bed.

Hope this helps,

Kind regards,

Dave C


Thanks for that Dave. The article I read about the heart problems was in the Daily Mail and I am aware that the media can tend to be scaremongers sometimes so maybe I should take it with a pinch of salt. I am quite fit considering everything, I don't have the fitness I used to have but not too bad .

thanks for your advice.

Kind Regards



I missed that one in the Daily Mail, was it recent?

Now your pinch of salt, how big a pinch as too much salt can be bad for you!!!


Kind regards,

Dave C


Yes Dave it was Saturdays mail 2 weeks ago. Also I don't take salt--lol


Dear Nuttytreacle,

(Loving your name!)

For acid reflux, try Aloe Vera juice. The reflux causes acid burns to the oesophagus which eventually become cancerous... Aloe Vera is an excellent treatment for burns and also highly nutritious. A little swig every now and again to line your throat...

(Castor oil with warm water (A little i.e. 1/4 a teaspoon) cis also protective to the lining, and great for the digestive tract.)

Try these with attention to the results and of course discontinue if any adverse reaction: take care not to over do as both these substances slightly loosen stools.

Reflux is worsened by bad posture: sit up straight when eating and digesting. Slumping pushes the stomach contents up... (I believe this to be one of the main causes of oesophageal cancer.) Try a gentle walk after eating. Don't eat late, that way being horizontal won't let as much stomach acid creap up the oesophagus...

I am not a medical doctor. However, I have been working with supporting health through yoga, including sucessful treatment of cancer patients for a number of years.

Wish you well!



It might depend upon the details of your surgery.

Some people are able to stop taking PPI medication, but, others, as Dave says, really do not have that option.

If you stop taking omeprazole but do not notice anything in the way of reflux, I would be inclined to give it, say, a month, and if you are still perfectly OK, consult your specialist about leaving it off all together. The chances are, however, that stopping it may lead to a short term 'bounce' in the reflux - you might like to deal with this by taking gaviscon, which works quite differently because it is an alginate that creates a protective raft inside your system for a few hours.

If you do not have a stomach, then logically you won't have stomach acid, and any reflux will depend upon the details of the surgery.

There are some endoscopic examinations that might possibly be affected by taking PPI medication like omeprazole, so it might also be worth telephoning the endoscopy examination and asking for their advice.

The vitamin D supplement sounds like a sensible precaution for any long term effects on bone density, but I had not heard personally about heart problems. If you are worried about your heart, your GP will be able to give you advice.

Omeprazole really is a well used, safe medication, and if your heart is otherwise OK I would try not to worry about side effects. There will inevitably be some effects from not having stomach acid, but if you have a good quality of life and reasonable comfort that is a reasonable achievement in the circumstances, and you might have reached the optimum level of recovery.

Waiting for an endoscopy can be a worrying time - but it can also be very reassuring when everything is found to be OK. Let us hope that this will be the outcome for you next week.


From a slightly different tack what would worry me is the effect of stomach acid on scar tissue. I had the Merendino Interposition 20 months ago and hence do not have reflux. I spoke to my surgeon and he said I was ok to come off Omeprazole. I was on 20mg twice a day. I asked if there would be any acid damage and he said no as the protective layer inside the stomach would grow over scar tissue. Presumably he has done many endoscopies and seen this? It could be that it takes many many years before acid attack shows in the form of barretts or cancer and it will take the same amount of time before you see it again.

I did come off it for a few weeks with no ill effects but in talking to my local doctor he suggested I drop the dose to one 20mg.

I wrote on OPA some time ago about the lack of knowledge by the medical profession on the multitude after effects on the digestion system of surgery. This is an example of 'we just dont know what is happening down there' !

My response is I dont know and I'm not sure anybody else does. The above responses do however help you to make your own decision based upon other peoples experiences and your doctors/surgeons as well.


Suppressing acid production will also inhibit production of the critical factor necessary for the absorption of vitamin B12.This can only be supplemented by regular injections .Lack of B12 has serious implications.

Bone density is an equally serious consideration--in my own case I have suffered 3 collapsed vertebrae with concomitant pain , posture problems etc. At my last density scan (on the thigh bone ) I had 27 per cent calcium depletion. This could have resulted from acid reduction both pre and post op.(Ivor Lewis 22 years ago )

Acid reflux without Omeprazole is no longer a problem since raising the head end of the bed frame (not using pillows or a platform) a minimum of 5 inches. Prior to this I had been listed in surgery for lung removal due to aspiration pneumonia.

As far as I am concerned the fewer meds the better.



FDA Mandatory Warning --



Hi Nuttytreacle

The answers above seem to cover all I would want to say. All I would add is that I had my op 11 years ago and have taken lamprazole for all that time (1x 20 mg in morning and one in evening) and had no ill effects. I ask doctor for regular blood and bone tests each year and believe the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. FYI am now 67

Hope this helps a bit



Thanks for that, Ihad an endoscopy recently and they found 2 spots of inflammation and. Bile reflux. My doc has doubled my Omeprozole to 2 a day and put me on metclopimide, 2morrow I'm having a bone density scan. Should I ask for a b12 blood test I do get pretty tired in the evening, glad you're so well Helen


I stopped taking the omeprazole over a week ago as i too concerned with long-term effects. I have been taking a prescription and OTC for several years I have a small hernia and acid reflux.

I found that if I watch my diet (not religously, but reasonably) and take a Zantac once in awhile which does not have the same side effects, appears to work. I'm not saying that this is good for everyone, but u may wish to try.

Being over 50, I'm genuinely concerned about the side effects of long term use as we age our bones weaken, certainly do not need kidney issues, can learn to adjust my diet more easily than adjusting my body to dialysis.

Its the only medication I was on; no blood pressure issues: no cholesterol issues Etc.... a simple antacid could be so dangerous, jeeez, what does that tell you about drugs!


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