Heartburn is a common medical condition that affects millions of Americans every year. If on a regular basis, you experience nausea, discomfort and chest pain that frequently accompanies heartburn, there are both over-the-counter and prescription medications that can help alleviate these symptoms. Unfortunately, some of these medications have side effects that can have serious and even life-threatening consequences.

In 2016, a study appeared in the medical journal Circulation Research that linked the popular heartburn medications known as proton pump inhibitors or PPIs to the increased risks of kidney failure, heart attack, and even dementia. It's estimated that approximately 15 million Americans take and could be at risk for suffering the adverse side effects of PPIs which are sold under common brand names including Nexium, Prevacid, and Prilosec.

Why Your Heartburn Medication May Be Dangerous?

PPIs work by essentially blocking stomach cells from producing acid. While this helps prevent heartburn, researchers discovered that PPIs also interfere with other important cellular functions which can inhibit a cell's ability to function correctly and aid in the normal healing and immunity process.

Because stomach acid plays an important role in the digestive process, people who use PPIs may experience health complications related to nutritional deficiencies and suppressed immunity. Additionally, long-term use of PPIs has been linked to more serious health complications and conditions affecting the heart, kidneys, and brain.

Next Steps If You've Experienced Heartburn Medication Side Effects

If you were previously prescribed or took an over-the-counter PPI, it's important to determine whether or not you suffered any short or long-term damaging side effects. From complications related to a bout of pneumonia to a debilitating heart attack, the personal and financial losses can be significant and negatively affect your quality of life for years to come.

By taking action against drug makers, you may be able to recover damages to account for your physical injuries, financial losses, and disability. An attorney who has a successful track record advocating for individuals and families who have been impacted by defective drugs can help.