Acid suppressing drugs may have an unexpected complication. A series of case reports linking proton pump inhibitors to low magnesium levels is worrisome. PPIs may interfere with magnesium absorption from the digestive tract. When magnesium levels drop too low, symptoms can include muscle cramps, nerve pain, heart arrhythmias, lethargy and seizures. If not corrected, this electrolyte imbalance can become life threatening. Many patients may not even realize that their magnesium levels have fallen into the danger zone.
[Archives of Internal Medicine, Aug. 8, 2011]