Deleterious effect of proton pump inhibitors on the disease course of cirrhosis

Tamás Janka, Tamás Tornai, Brigitta Borbély, Dávid Tornai, István Altorjay, Mária Papp, Zsuzsanna Vitális

Research output: Article

3 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives Proton pump inhibitors(PPIs) are widely prescribed to patients with liver cirrhosis. We hypothesized that long-standing PPI use is associated with spontaneous bacterial peritonitis(SBP) and accelerated development of disease-specific complications and liver-related death. Methods A 5-year follow-up observational cohort study assessed the impact of long-standing PPI use on the clinical course of cirrhosis in a large referral patient cohort. Three hundred fifty patients with cirrhosis (alcohol:69.1%, Child-Pugh stage A/B/C:206/108/36) were assigned to two groups: regular PPI users (n=196) and nonusers (n=154). Occurrence of SBP, decompensation events (ascites, hepatic encephalopathy and variceal bleeding), and liver-related death were assessed. Results Regular PPI use was associated with an increased cumulative probability of SBP compared to nonusers [55% vs. 24.8%, hazard ratio(HR):4.25; P=0.05], in patients without previous SBP episode (n=84). A similar association was found between regular PPI use and decompensation events. The risk of the development of a first decompensation was higher in regular PPI users compared with nonusers, in patients with compensated clinical stage at enrollment (HR: 2.81, P= 0.008, n=146). The risk of liver-related death was also significantly increased among regular PPI users (P<0.001). In multivariate Cox-regression analysis, regular PPI use (HR:2.81, P=0.003) and MELD score (HR:1.21, P<0.001) was an independent predictor of mortality. Conclusion In the present follow-up cohort study, long-term PPI use was associated with the development of SBP and a progressive disease course in patients with cirrhosis that may have been caused by enhanced pathologic bacterial translocation, accelerated development of bacterial translocation-dependent disease-specific complications, and liver-related death.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-264
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Publication statusPublished - febr. 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology

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