Has anyone linked Prevacid to irregular heart rhythms?
I just got my Prevacid Rx (taken for reflux) refilled. I have been taking this for roughly 10 years, just about the same number of years I've been having Afib. On the cautions, it reads, "Low Blood Magnesium levels have been reported rarely in patients taking PPIs for at least 3 months. In most cases, this effect was seen after a year of treatment. If you will be taking this med for a long time or if you take certain other meds (eg., digoxin, diuretics such as furosemide or hydrochorothiasize), your doctor may perform tests for low magnesium. Symptoms of low magnesium: DIZZINESS; FAST OR IRREGULAR HEARTBEAT; INVOLUNTARY MUSCLE MOVEMENTS; JITTERINESS OR TREMORS; muscle aches, cramps, pain, spasms or weakness; seizures) . . ."
I am going to try to get off this med because it has other side effects such as worsening osteoporis and making one susceptible to pneumonia. It boggles the mind to think my heart issues might be linked to this drug.
I dont take prevacid but have been on nexium over 10 years. I looked it up after I read your post and was horrified to find these side affects listed under it too. I have severe osteoporosis plus many other health problems including some heart related. I feel now I need to get off it but am told its hard. Did your dr advise you of best way to do that?
Thank you for your post.
I have been on Prevacid for the past 13 years, since I was 27. I began taking it for erosive esophigitis. Two years later at the age of 29 I was diagnosed with Barrett's Esophagus. I had always (since I was 22) noticed a link between my stomach issues and my irregular heartbeat. I skipped the Prevacid one day, and ended up in the ER with severe heart irregularities after eating gravy from my school cafeteria (contained msg). I knew then, there was a definite connection between the stomach and heart and the Prevacid was my lifeline. When I was 31, they scoped me again and the Barrett's was gone...when I was 33 the erosive esophagitis was gone, so now I don't accidently skip my Prevacid at all. I paid a lot for it for many years until it became available in generic and took it faithfully. That being said, I knew that it could cause B12 deficiency, but was not aware of all the side effects you listed.
I am so dizzy everyday and I have recently told my husband again, as I have on and off through the years, that sometimes I get a hot flash and it feels like an aura feeling, like maybe I'm about to have a siezure, but I feel really funny and out of body for a few seconds. I was trying to link my atenolol and hormones to the dizziness and actually was on symptom checker last night (because I had one of those spells yesterday, happens a lot with flourecent lighting), and the top medical condition was of course...anxiety (which I'm really tired of everyone and everything saying this and trying to link everything to anxiety), but the next one was medication reaction!! Although I would not wish these horrible feelings on anyone, I do wish people would realize we are having real symptoms. It's not anxiety when you're sitting by your pool laughing and visiting with your family. (sorry got off subject a bit).
I am going to have to do some research...thanks for posting!
I, too, have had an irritable heart when I've tried to cut back on the PPI. I am going to see my internist next week and my cardiologist next month. I think when you stop the PPI you get a rebound effect with more acid. I am not sure how long that would last. I'm thinking maybe a lower dose -- I take 30 mg. of Prevacid -- and/or trying the meds like famatadine or rimitadine (sp?) might be an answer. I think they keep the stomach from producing as much acid, rather than stop it altogether. I do have reflux, but I could do more for that, such as not eating as late at night, smaller meals and avoiding spicier foods. Most of what I've read says not to stay on these drugs for long periods of time, but it is hard to get off of them. I will share whatever advice I get from my doctors. This is a new warning on my meds -- I don't always read those inserts, but I will from now on. Maybe it is something they just discovered. I used to have a shaking or twitching thing with my legs and sometimes arms and never could get an answer on what was causing it. I also have osteoporosis. Several of my meds cause dizziness also, including the Atenolol. I take that in divided doses throughout the day -- it's a pain, but otherwise my bp drops like a stone. I think we have to be proactive in discovering these things. I think my Norpace may also be causing me to feel depressed, and I refuse to take another medication to counteract the side effects of the first one! No wonder big pharm is making so much money off of us:P Good luck to you both. It is good to have a place to discuss these things.
Oh yeah, I agree about anxiety being a wastebasket diagnosis. It's what they say when they can't figure out what's wrong. I was told I was having panic attacks so many times I finally accepted it, but the attacks always come after my heart acts up and, like you said, when there is nothing to make me anxious. My cardiologist is dead set against my taking a low dose of Xanax, but there are times when my heart is racing or irregular or both, when I'm putting out so much adrenaline, that the Xanax is a life saver and allows me to function. I have cut back the amount I use by half since I retired, because I am not exposed to the daily stress I would not have managed the last 2 years of my job without the Xanax. My internist says it stops the adrenaline.
I developed around 8000+ PVCs a day after being on Nexium for several years. I cut back on it to save money, using a calcium/magnesium, over the counter antacid on daysI didn't take Nexium. I eventually weaned off Nexium, and to my great surprise my PVCs stopped. I had my heart monitored just to be sure, (before my regular treadmill stress test) and the cardiologist said there were no longer any PVCs at all.
The doctor said that PPIs like Nexium, or Prevacid, or Prilosec not only deplete calcium and B vitamins, but magnesium too. (and our hearts need magnesium to be healthy. He also said that some water filters reduce the calcium and magnesium our bodies need. I mentioned trying ranitidine, Xantac, or Pepcid, but my doctor says those can also cause heart arrhythmias (again, they cause depletion of magnesium). Just thought you should know.
I also found that when my acid reflux was acting up I had more PVCs. However, since I quit the prescription meds for reflux, I haven't had any.
Thanks for the info. How did you wean off the Nexium? I'm taking Prevacid 30 mg., but when I skip it for more than a day, my heart starts acting up. I'd appreciate any input on how to go about weaning off of it. This is so amazing to me, that something like this could cause so much trouble!!! I am talking to my dr. about it this week and see what he's got to say about it. Wish me luck!
Delta, be sure to let your doctor know if you want to try taper off Nexium. Just because it helped me doesn't mean that it's best for you. We are all different.
I was told to first reduce the amount of Nexium by half every other day (40 mg. one day, 20 mg the next). I did this for several weeks, using a generic antacid (containing calcium an, magnesium) if I needed to. But I found it didn't need to use the antacid very often if I ate small meals every few hours and avoided trigger foods. After a few more weeks, the doctor told me to try taking just 20 mg of Nexium every other day, using the generic antacid as needed if I felt a little reflux. After about three weeks, I tried a Nexium every two days, using the generic antacid again as needed.
By now you probably know the drill.My doctor just let me experiment from here on in. Eventually I was taking Nexium only every fourth or fifth day, substituting the generic antacid in between whenever I felt that heartburny feeling in my throat, felt pressure like I had to belch. By this time, I was noticing that my PVCs were lessening. I tried getting off Nexium completely, as my doctor felt I was doing pretty well. As long as I didn't eat trigger foods, ate healthy, and ate five smaller meals a day (nothing after 7:30 at night), I had much less reflux. It's now been quite a few months, and I'm doing okay.
I don't seem to have as much fatigue and lightheadedness as when I took Nexium, and my food seems to digest better. I try to take the calcium/magnesium antacids only when needed, and I'm only having a little reflux every other day. So far, so good. I'm not depleting my body of minerals and vitamins anymore, and am not as likely to get infections or broken bones as easily as when I was on Nexium. I still have a pounding heart at times (just a feeling that my heart is beating harder). But my blood pressure is fine when that happens and the heartbeat is regular.
So for right now, things are going okay. Although at age 69, I keep getting other little health surprises. Right now I'm nursing a sore lower back just because I tried to work in my garden a bit. Always something.
I am on my bandwagon - Horrid arrhythmia and epigastric pressure for 2+ years diagnosed as non-acid reflux GERD - no heart disease and endoscopy showed no problems - I searched for causes of reflux pain and discovered that ambien use produces the exact symptoms.... after 2 days after stopping ambien the reflux and arrhythmia were gone... not even the doctors would have guessed. review your medications - it may not be what you think. good luck
Thanks for the info. I saw my internist yesterday and he said to swtich to Zantac 150. Since I've been on Prevacid so long, it seems like your way might be better. Guess I'll have to give it some thought. Several of my meds, including Prevacid say they can cause dizziness. It's enough that the Afib gives me a dizzy, lightheaded feeling, don't need anything extra! Sorry about your back issues. Getting old isn't for sissies;-) I made a list of all my ailments the other day and it was depressing! But if I can cure one by discontinuing a med, I'm all for it. Thanks again.
Additional heads up: Are you all aware of the osteoporosis drugs like Fosamax and the one that's injected once a year being linked to Afib as well as causing fractures? Don't want to scare anyone on these drugs, but when I read the warnings about the once-a-year injectable drug my family doctor was about to put me on, I asked my cardiologist and he said it's not for me.
I was cardio converted 3 times to resolve AFib I was experiencing. I was on Effexor and went off it before the last cardio conversion. When I mentioned the connection of AFib and Effexor to the nurse at the cardiologist's office he laughted and said I would be surprised at the number of meds which can cause cardiac arrhythmias. Now I research the meds and weigh out the pro and cons before starting on any meds. The posts here have been helpful for me to evaluate what I should take for GERD which is causing me problems at this time. Thank You.
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