The People's Perspective on Medicine



Prilosec is the first of a new class of drugs that combat acid secretion by blocking the final step.

This so-called proton pump is prescribed for the short-term treatment of duodenal ulcer and for conditions of abnormal acidity such as serious heartburn (GERD) or the rare Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.

It has a very quick onset and is extremely effective in reducing stomach acid.

Prilosec should not be prescribed as maintenance therapy to keep ulcers from coming back.

Side Effects and Interactions

Prilosec is generally well tolerated. However, headache, diarrhea, stomachache, muscle weakness and rash have been reported.

Other adverse reactions that have been reported less commonly include constipation, cough, fatigue, sore throat and vomiting. Report any symptoms or suspected reactions to your physician promptly.

Prilosec slows the elimination of several drugs that must be processed by the liver, including the anxiety medicine Valium, the anti-epileptic Dilantin and the blood thinner Coumadin.

Blood levels of these drugs may rise and side effects become a problem. If you take both Prilosec and Coumadin, tell your doctor right away if you experience any unusual bruising, bleeding, reddish urine or blackened stools. Prilosec is also reported to blood levels of Sandimmune or Antabuse.

Many other prescription drugs require acidity for absorption. Prilosec can interfere with such medicines, which include Nizoral, ampicillin and iron supplements, among others.

People taking acid-suppressing drugs such as Prilosec should not take enteric-coated peppermint oil. The enteric coating is designed to keep the oil from being absorbed until it reaches the more alkaline lower intestine. But when there is very little stomach acid, the enteric coating may dissolve prematurely, releasing the oil into the stomach.

In older people with too little stomach acid or in patients taking a strong acid suppressor such as Prilosec, vitamin B12 absorption may be impaired. Cranberry juice appears to improve the absorption of this crucial vitamin in such cases.

Be sure to check with your pharmacist and physician about potential interactions before taking any other medication or herb in combination with Prilosec.

Special Precautions

Animal studies have shown that Prilosec is associated with a dose-related increase in stomach cancers. It is not known whether this risk also applies to humans.

In addition, because it is so effective at reducing stomach acid concentrations, patients taking this medicine have higher levels of certain microorganisms in their stomachs than would normally survive there.

Scientists do not yet know whether these bacteria have negative long-term consequences.

Regular supplementation with vitamins C and E might in theory provide protection against nitrosamines produced by the bacteria.

People with liver disease have more trouble metabolizing Prilosec. Older people also remove the drug from circulation more slowly.

Taking the Medicine

Prilosec should be taken before meals.

These delayed-release capsules should not be opened, crushed or chewed, as that might expose them to stomach acid. The medication can be inactivated by acid.

Antacids may be taken with Prilosec if they are needed.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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I have taken 40 mg twice daily since 2000. My stomach has felt great since I started this. It has all but eliminated Barrett syndrome!!!! I have ZERO issues!

OME can cause blurred vision, my right eye can not focus, I want to know how to fix it…

All I can say is WEIGHT GAIN helped me, RADICAL WEIGHT GAIN IN ARMS AND LEGS, AND BELLY BLOAT TO END ALL BELLY BLOAT!! :( Yes, it solves the GERD, but I can’t fit into any of my clothes.

Omeprazol can cause b12 deficiency and b12 deficiency can cause nerve damage. Blurry vision could be nerve damage. Check your b12 level.

My husband was taking ranitidine for years without any side effects. For some unknown reasons a doctor he visited for his throat changed it to Smallwood. Gradually a man who had been my ‘telephone directory’ could no longer remember numbers, the date and other short term memory issues. His cognition is fine. I read about memory issues with oemeprazole and so we went back to ranitidine. I see a little improvement after one week. Older people should not be put on this drug. Bernice

I have extreme nausea and very weak feeling after only two days of taking omeprozole.

I need to quit taking Omeprazole. I do not have heartburn, so are there any rebound effects I may suffer? I have taken them for about two years.

Many people who stop taking their heartburn medications do experience painful rebound reflux or hyperacidity.
We have written about this topic at length before. Take a look at the following articles for advice when weaning off of these medications.

Thank you all for your comments. This is the only site I have found that has contained much about the side effects I’ve recently experienced. I’ve only taken Prilosec OTC 20 mg pills since late April, and those only occasionally. I got immediate relief, and found them to be continuously effective even taking only two pills or fewer per week. However, after I’d taken only about 20 pills, I noticed random itchiness on my shoulder blades at first, then also on my face throughout that first night. I stopped taking them immediately, but the itching immediately progressed to sun sensitivity on the back of my neck, my forearms, and my face, causing slight puffiness and mild acne too.
It’s been two weeks today since my last pill, and the sun sensitivity continues. The itching subsided, but is not gone yet either. Also, I’ve had some insomnia, which I had not had before two weeks ago. The one question I still have after reading this and several other websites is: how long does it take for the sun sensitivity to go away? I am a 53 year-old male with, thankfully, no other health problems than the throat irritation and hoarseness due to a hiatus hernia that eventually led me to try Prilosec.

I could not tolerate Omeprazol any more and have been switched to Ranitidine, which is less invasive. I have made drastic changes to my eating habits, and have had notable improvement with me acid reflux.
I do have Barrett’s which developed while I was on Omeprazol.

I’ve recently been diagnosed with pernicious anemia and have received the first six injections of vitamin B12. Awaiting results of blood test for levels of B12. I read that prilosec impairs the absorption of B12, hence injections instead of pills which I would very much prefer. Can one wean oneself off prilosec and find an alternative solution. I have been taking prilosec for about 7 years.

I have been on prilosec for 11 years now. I was diagnosed with acid reflux when my ENT doc looked in my sinus and saw I had a deviated septum and reflux damadge in my esophogus. He started me on nexium to heal my throat and after that ran out I started on prilosec to keep the acid at bay.
I used to be constantly tired and had a hard time remembering things so after looking things up on prilosec I noticed the vitamin b deficiency problem. When you don’t get enough vitamin b then you can have memory problems and fatigue. I now take Vit B Complex daily and I also take Calcium Citrate to prevent osteoporosis (it has the acid in it to process in your body since I don’t have it anymore when taking prilosec – other calcium supplements don’t absorb without acid).
I have more energy now but could be better still. I also am able to remember better but still have times when it is hard to remember specific instances of things but that may be normal with age. I want to try to get off Prilosec.
Every time I try to get off it the rebound acid is horrendous. I am going to give it another try by trying to taper off my prilosec little by little by using Tums and Gaviscon in addition to 1/2 dose of my prilosec. wish me luck. I read on another site that it takes the body 2 months for the stomach cells to revert back to normal after taking a PPI.

Reading this with a degree of amazement. I’ve been on this drug for more than 5 years and it literally saved me from endless months of pain and misery. Terrible acid reflux and burning, bloating, stomach pain… Turned out I had stomach and duodenal ulceration causing bleeding and anaemia.
As for the omeprazole, I’ve never had any side effects. I have a high powered job and no time for fatigue or worrying about every small ache and pain, and my memory seems as sharp as ever. I’m careful with my diet and don’t drink alcohol, but I’ve lost 2 dress sizes since my diagnosis and commencement on this drug. I run 5 miles twice a week and other than occasional runners plantar pain in my right foot, have not noticed any undue bone, joint, or muscle problems. I’m probably the fittest I’ve ever been in my life.
I’m so sorry for everyone suffering here, but can’t help wondering if all the symptoms described can be attributed to taking omeprazole. We do get achy as we get older, and ditto the weight gain thing if we’re not careful, especially once our oestrogen levels start to plummet. Sometimes it might be easier to look for a specific culprit rather than accept our bodies don’t always function as they should.
Anyway, felt I had to post this, as I really do think of this drug as my saviour and door to a new lease of life. I sincerely hope everyone else here finds a solution which helps ease their distress and solves their discomfort.

Been on Omeprazole for 15 years. Before that, I had debilitating acid reflux interfering with my everyday activities. Now I just don’t get axid reflux.
No weight gain. No mental problems. No bloating. No noticeable side effects.
If I forget to take it for a couple days, I get terrible acid reflux…the same as before I was on it.
For me, it does what it’s supposed to do, with no side effects.

Thank you very much for your response. I was not aware that it can cause mineral absorption problems; I will be talking to my doc about this.

This is bad medicine perverted by big $ and corporate profits. The # 2 seller in USA. The science provided by the drug companies is designed to make doctors think it is ok especially short term. The literature does not connect the dots and make connections with side effects etc.
For example if someone is weak and losing weight there is an effort to have them eat more protein; however if there is no stomach acid you cannot process the protein. The doctors only see the stop the acid regurgitation they don’t see the consequences. This drug causes stomach atrophy. To me this means as soon as you start taking it, it starts destroying your stomach. If something decreases function how then can it help you recover and get better.
This drug also causes cancer in animal experiments however for some reason this is ignored.
Do no harm means improving function. MD’s do not consider strong people verses weak people they look at everybody the same; therefore when they expect people to not have side effects until a long time later a weak, immune compromised person, or elderly may have side effects immediately and receive considerable harm or even death. This is often prescribed to prevent acid regurgitation but if the stomach is insulted enough it will cause acid regurgitation for sure!
I am a practitioner of Traditional Chinese medicine and this information was provided to me by a pharmacist who is a Doctor of Oriental Medicine as well. He teaches drug herb interactions to pharmacists in California Universities and also to practitioners of Chinese Medicine. In other words this information was provided by a world authority on the subject. Name not provided as I have not asked for permission. Better to try other alternatives such as Traditional Chinese Medicine before taking this “bad medicine.”

AC, you should seriously consider talking to your doctors about the possibility of you suffering from a deficiency of vitamin B’s. If you did have a problem with the production of too much stomach acid then you should know that the gastrointestinal inflammation that can be caused by this frequently leads to malabsorption of nutrients, particularly vitamin B12, B6, and magnesium – but other nutrients can also be affected. Hope this helps.

My doctor diagnosed me with GERD after I had to be rushed to the ER with severe difficulty breathing. I had been having these strange symptoms for a while. First it was the trouble breathing; it felt like my chest was caving in and tightening. Then I started getting stomach pains, and becoming full after eating only a little bit of food. One day the trouble breathing got so bad I felt like all the my air passages in my lungs were closing up.
I started shaking uncontrollably, and my eyes turned red. My family was there and the took me to the hospital. At first they thought I might have asthma, but they ruled that out because my pulse ox was fine and the lung X-ray was normal, so they said it was acid reflux.
I have never heard of those symptoms associated with gastric reflux before, I thought it was just heartburn. The doctors put me on zantac, and then Prilosec after that didn’t work. But ever since I have been on the medicine (I’ve been on it about a month or so), I have experienced a decreased appetite, nausea/queasiness, and sharp, aching stomach pains.
Is this normal to experience these side effects? I no longer have difficulty breathing episodes so it definitely helped with that, but it seemed to have created new problems. Has anyone else experienced this?

Dear Yoke T., I am so sorry to hear about your problem! I also gained about 10 lbs. within less than a month when I started taking Omneprazole/Prilosec! My stomach has bloated and especially the upper midsection has bloated to an unreal size. I eat pretty healthy and there is no reason that I should have gained so much so quickly. The only thing that I can think of is that I started taking the Omneprazole. I wish this drug had come with a warning of the weight gain and bloating. And, now that I’m trying to stop taking it (just every other day, then 1/2 pill every other day… trying to wean myself off of it), my heartburn has been unreal!!! I never had this horrible of heartburn before I started taking this medicine. I am now seeing where no one should take it for more than a few weeks. I wish I had known this. I feel like my bloating is never going to go away, but I am praying that it will once this drug is out of my system. I wish you luck. Please keep us informed as to what happens with your Dr. appt.!

Was put on Omeprazole a little over a year ago for a bleeding ulcer that had no obvious cause. It did not heal so my doctor added Sucralfate for 30 days and the ulcer then healed. I did not notice any side effects, but after 6 or 7 mo. weaned myself off the Omeprazole after reading about PPI’s. Now, about 6 mo. later, my ulcer is back so I am back on the Omeprazole and the Sucra for 30 days. My doctor is unhappy with me and tells me I need to take Omeprazole the rest of my life! I have noticed the back pain when I get up in the morning and my blood pressure is suddenly up 30 points, but I don’t know if one of these drugs may be the cause. I’m disappointed my doctor is not giving me alternatives or cares about the source of my ulcer.

Neuropathy in feet started first. The last was a month ago with horrible back pain. Several doctors, thousands of dollars, and just found out “every” medical problem I have had is all related to taking omeprazole! 2007 until today. 1 pill each and everyday. NO MORE! Some of the side effects say only 1% of people get, and wouldn’t ya just know…I had to be in that 1%.

Charlotte, did you ever stop having the bloating? I have been taking Omneprazole (Prilosec) for 2 years now. My bloating in the upper part of my stomach is horrible! I tried to stop taking the medicine and experienced the worst heartburn I’ve ever had in my life! Now I’m reading that this medicine may be CAUSING the bloating! Just curious whatever happened with you?

I had this omeprazole 20mg for more than a month, the side effects are so obvious that I had to stop take this pill. I went to my annul pep smear check up, my gynocologist told me why my stomach seems bloated then I told her I have been taking Omeprazole for my acid reflux but had to stop taking it because my face and both hands were swollen and noticing weight gain. She later told me, I gained 10 pounds. I was shock.
I told her for past 4 weeks I gained 10 pounds. She then recommends me to see GI to do some test. This is happening so I need to go thru a sonogram screening then check with GI for any possible scenario. Omg I am so lost.

This drug made me sick. Aciphex and Nexium work better for me. Try DGL Licorice for a while. The problem with the pump shutting drugs is the side effects.
I suggest the licorice and occasional taking of a pro pump inhib for a brief period while your stomach/esoph heals. A week should do it. Also, you much control your diet and stop eating things you are allergic to or will irritate, like acidic coffee, chocolate, straight liquor, greasy chips, undercooked foods.


I’ve been experiencing EXACTLY the same symptoms as you. For me it all started as just mild reflux and they prescribed me Omeprazole and I have never EVER felt so bloated in my entire life! I have IBS too and it has made it worse… and this is all after just one month. Anyway I stopped taking it today and I feel terrible but I’m sure eventually my tummy will settle. Good luck.

Have you eliminated gluten? Your symptoms have all the hallmarks of a gluten allergy.
I took prilosec for twelve years, and, among other fairly mild side effects, I experienced some throat swelling while on the drug (20 mg a day). The swelling resolved within a week of coming off the drug. Rebound heartburn is severe and you may have experienced that, in part. One study showed that people who didn’t have GERD, but took prilosec for a period of time experienced rebound heartburn after quitting prilosec from 4 to 12 weeks… you could still be experiencing rebound.
But I’d also eliminate gluten and see if you feel better. watch your dairy too.

Two days ago I took 1 otc prilosec and 1 hr later was having a severe allergic reaction. Eyes swollen, hands and feet, body all red and itching, tongue thick. I spent all night in emergency room. Home now no rash but body still itching some. I’m on predinisone and pepcid (both histamine blockers). Anyone ever experience this type of reaction? Dr thinks is was not related to the prilosec but instead a food allergy. I’m also allergic to sulfonamides.

This is bad medicine perverted by big $ and corporate profits. The # 2 seller in USA. The science provided by the drug companies is designed to make doctors think it is ok especially short term. The literature does not connect the dots and make connections with side effects etc.
For example if someone is weak and loosing weight there is an effort to have them eat more protein; however if there is no stomach acid you cannot process the protein. The doctors only see the stop the acid regurgitation they don’t see the consequences. This drug causes stomach atrophy. To me this means as soon as you start taking it, it starts destroying your stomach. If something decreases function how then can it help you recover and get better.
Do no harm means improving function. MD’s do not consider strong people verses weak people they look at everybody the same; therefore when they expect people to not have side effects until a long time later a weak, immune compromised person, or elderly may have side effects immediately and receive considerable harm or even death.
Drugs do not treat the causes of disease so in general you will require more and in the end will have cardiovascular, liver, kidney disease or cancer. If you look up end stage kidney disease (ESKD) (includes kidney dialysis) government statistics and consider why this has increased 10-600% in the last 10-20 years you can see that our health and quality of life is declining but our medical system manages to keep us alive anyway.
Sorry I’m venting my brother just died yesterday and the MD’s one ofter another kept putting him in this RX and kept blowing me off because that’s what they do with most people since they often think they are smarter.

I’ve lived with Gerd for well over 10 years. Omeprazole made it go away, but I developed allergies and had to stop it.
Now I have tried all sorts of natural remedies – they don’t work! I am best off with licorice to control the fresh burn and Zantac as needed. I try to eat all home made food, fresh fruit and vegetables, low salt, no spicy food, low fat. It works most days. But as soon as I pop a donut, or succumb to a piece of pizza – I am done for the next few hours…
Best thing to do to learn your body and how it reacts to certain foods is to start with an elimination diet – start with only bread and eggs and slowly add foods. It will be easier to figure out what you can tolerate and what not. Otherwise you’ll always wonder “was it the yoghurt, or was it the sharp cheddar – was it the pizza sauce or was the guacamole?”
BTW – avocado is well tolerated, guacamole is death. If you want pizza, try a white pizza sauce and chicken and spinach… they are tolerable.

I was diagnosed a few years ago with Barrett’s Espopagus, but never followed up with treatment. I was just diagnosed a few weeks ago with Acid Reflux because of my cough and irritated throat – not a lot of heartburn. My Doc prescribed Prilosec and I have been taking it for about a week and a half. My mouth has broken out terribly as an allergic reaction. I have really swollen lips, they are red, and feel like they’re burning. I called my Doc this morning to tell her about it and ask if there is a different medication I can use to heal my esophagus.
I just want to take it for the recommended month to bring healing to my throat and esophagus and then upon multiple searches on the internet for natural cures for acid reflux, I found that raw organic apple cider vinegar (Bragg’s makes a good version) mixed in water taken 3 times a day helps bring healing and balances out your stomach’s ph levels. I am going to do the ACV drinks after I get off the next GERD medication as a long-term plan. I cannot guarantee that it will work, but it is a natural alternative worth trying. Hope this brings hope to some of you. I’d be interested in feedback.

Hi I’m on Prilosec since Dec 2012. I was diagnosed with Barrett’s. The crazy thing is I had no symptoms of gerds or acid reflux or anything. One morning I thought I was having a heart attack and a friend drove me to the hospital. My heart checked out fine. While I was at the hospital I was held overnight I guess that’s procedure the gal who delivered my food told me I probably had gerds.
I left the hospital knowing my heart was ok but not one doctor or nurse told me what my chest pain could be now that my heart was ruled ok. I went to my dr and he sent me to the upper gi dr. After the scope I was diagnosed with barrets esophagus. I was put on Prilosec and had a scope done 2 months later and was told keep doing what your doing and ill see you in 2 years. I felt relieved. But I play racquettball and I’m finding my chest hurts when I start playing. I also tried to do a trx class and found that I run out of gas real quickly. I have not had that happen before.
I’ve read all these comments and I want to stop Prilosec. If I have changed my diet and stopped taking aleve and stopped eating late at night don’t drink or smoke can I stop Prilosec you guys are making my feel like I’m stuck on this stuff for life. I hate that I have no extra energy and seem to hit the wall quickly like never before with loss of energy. Help I want off of this drug. What can I do.
People’s Pharmacy response: You may find this information helpful:

I believe that omeprazole/prilosec must cause problems for many people. I took it for years not realizing that many of my symptoms of migraines, dizziness, and generally feeling tired might have been caused by this medicine. After being off it for about six months, my ENT doctor put me back on it yesterday due to problems with an inflamed esophagus as well as chronic hoarseness. The ENT viewed my esophagus and larynx and said the inflammation and hoarseness was due to acid reflux that occurs during the night without my knowing it. After only two doses of the prescribed capsule, my blood pressure dropped really low, I became dizzy, have a migraine for the first time in months, and generally feel bad. I just phoned my ENT to see what he wants me to do now. Obviously, I want my esophagus to heal and my hoarseness to correct, but am I just trading two problems for another one?

Kam, while there has been a proportionally large amount of notice given to omeprazole’s adverse effect on the absorption of B12 you should know that it also can affect the body’s absorption of B6, magnesium and iron.
I suspect that as research continues we will discover more nutrients whose absorption or use are similarly affected. Everyone, but particularly those over the age of 55, who is taking omeprazole should also be taking a good multi vitamin and mineral supplement, and try to find the minimal dosage for themselves. Better still, try to see if an H2 blocker, like Ranitidine, is sufficient to deal with their symptoms rather than a proton pump inhibitor like omeprazole.

I have been taking 40mg omeprazole once a day for the past 4 months… recently I started taking metformin 500 for PCOS…. after two weeks of the metformin I started having a fuzzy like pins and needles in my face…. so I stopped the Metformin three days ago and have been taking 2 B-12 sublingually daily as I am finding out that both of these drugs can deplete your B-12 levels… I am still somewhat fuzzy in the head and will make an appt. with PCP and gastro doc to discuss… I feel like I start to over-analyze everything and then doing the research start panicking at what I am reading… uggh however why are we not informed about the prolonged use? Anyone else out there with symptoms of numbness and panicky feeling in the chest?

I have the weakness. I took Omeprazole for 5-6 years, and ended up almost in a wheel chair. I was so weak, I could not walk around the house. I did not make the connection with Omeprazole – but I did an elimination experiment, and after about 6 months came to realize it was the Omeprazole. It took me another 2-3 months to convince my primary care physician that I was not making this up.
Then they put me on Ranitidine, which did not seem to work as well for acid reflux – but I learned to eat better – avoid certain foods, and take the Ranitidine in two doses, half in the morning, half at night – that way it continued working instead of getting flushed.
My gastroenterologist put me back on Omeprazole but the first day, I had shins burning and became so weak, I wished I had not taken it… I will not take it again, for sure! Back to Ranitidine.

How long were you on the omeprazole before you had a reaction? and what kind of reaction did you have?

Hi everyone…I am with Barret’s Esophagus diagnose…every year for the last 6 went through an endoscopy (every year a new one) to see any improvement…since day one of the first endoscopy I have being taking Omeprazole 40mg. twice a day…my life was miserable…the symptoms were like a torch in my stomach going up to my throat…even my tong got burned…the acid was so powerful that I couldn’t take it anymore. Up until now I got not problems…every single discomfort that was mentioned in every comment that I read…I got them also…but…with this treatment went away…less wine…a bit of chocolate…no jalapenos…I quit smoking…lost almost 40 pounds…I am doing a normal life…one thing…I remember my doctor words after the first endoscopy…”do not worry…you wont die if you follow my instruction…take 1 capsule in the morning and 1 at night both before meals…(like a 30 minutes before)…Now is the time for my next endoscopy…but believe me…I wont go another days without taking the Omeprazole 40mg…the worst is over…I have to live with that for the rest of my life (I am 62 years old)…hope my comment will help others with the same problem…good luck…Luis

I have been on omeprazole dr 20MG for about a month and a half now. I am not certain if the following side effects are from the drug or not, but I’m not taking any more chances. SEVERE abdominal bloating in which I look 7 months pregnant, bouts of constipation, a feeling of having to go to the bathroom/fart but not being able to, shortness of breath, fatigue, weakness in muscles, anxiety, and depression. I feel like everything I eat is not able to be digested and just sits in my stomach. The main problem is the bloating. It is so extreme that sometimes my lower back hurts because it is constantly distended.
I was prescribed this medication because of some mild/moderate heartburn which was accompanied with constipation/diarrhea and bouts of bloating. I am discontinuing the use cold turkey of this medication as well as going gluten free and dairy free.
Has anyone else experienced any of the above symptoms?? I have been feeling the worst I have ever felt in my life (I’m only 24) and it completely debilitates me. I no longer want to participate in social activities because I feel I always have to suck in my bloated stomach/hide it. It is now summer and I’m fearful to get into a bathing suit if this problem persists.
I had an endoscopy about a month ago that only told me that I have GERD, but I am willing to deal with the symptoms of that (moderate heartburn) than have to deal with the bloating. I am also taking stool softeners every night which have helped with the constipation, but does not relieve the bloating when I am able to go to the bathroom (I now am able to go at least once a day).
I’d appreciate anyone’s feedback!!! Thank you!

Hi…i have a great deal of acid in my stomach my doctor prescribed prolisec and i would like to know if it will go down on this med???
People’s Pharmacy response: Prilosec will control stomach acid, but it can be difficult to discontinue.

Hi Peoplespharmacy,
Thanks you for your post, Wondering if there are any side effects or things to watch out for when taking this medicine and any tips from people suffering from Gastritis. I’ve never had any real stomach complaints until recently because of my pain medication. I now know not to have acidic foods or milk (lactose intolerant). Anything else to watch out for?
to your success!

I was on omeprazole (2x40mg per day) for two weeks to treat a suspected acid reflux problem/peptic ulcer, and noticed itchiness on the backs of my legs almost immediately (but didn’t connect it to omeprazole). Because I also developed even more serious bile reflux symptoms (due to increased gastrin production also triggered by omeprazole), I stopped taking the drug after 14 days. My reflux symptoms disappeared almost entirely, but I was left with a very itchy rash of raised red bumps on the tops of my feet, up and down both legs, on my hands and forearms, my face (especially around my lips, which have swollen) and around my nailbeds on all ten fingers; and persistent tingling in my fingertips and my scalp. Hoping it resolves soon.

I was diagnosed with Barretts Esophagus more than 2 months ago after an endoscopy. I have been on Omeprazole ever since at 80mg / day. I haven’t slept through the night since the endoscopy more than 2 months ago. I thought something in my throat had been damaged during the procedure, but after checking out the side effects of Omeprazole I’m pretty sure that the swelling in my throat and the congestion are caused by the Omeprazole… which is giving me the symptoms of sleep apnea!
I wake up every hour or two – wide awake and not knowing why.
Also having itchy bumps, hives, on the back of my neck and my chest.
I have a Dr appointment in two days and I’m going to find out if I can cut my dosage in half.
I’m so glad I read about the side effects of this medicine.

I took this OTC drug for about two weeks and ended up with a severe cough, sore throat, rash, horrible muscle cramps and diarrhea. I had to take 3 days off work. Needless to say, I will not be taking it again!

HI.. I have taken omeprazole for 6 months for my chronic gastritis. I experienced some bad effects, such as nausea. After an endoscopy, the nurse told me to continue the drugs indefinitely, but I decided to stop taking the drug because my legs were very weak. I decided to eat my three meals at specific hours and to eat an snack between the meals; this practice helped me to reduce the amount of acid. I don’t feel heartburn anymore. After three weeks of stopping omeprazole, I have headaches and my left leg sometimes twitches, can this symptom be as a result of taking omeprazole?.. can anyone comment about it?

Hi there K S-D, I have Barrett’s & a Sliding Hiatus Hernia, I’ve been taking 40mg Of Omeprozole daily for the last four years with no problems whatsoever, times in the past I’ve forgotten to take the tablets and the Heartburn has come back very painfully, and I just take the tablets.
The last time I had Biopsies taken I said to the Doc I had read bad things regarding Taking 40mg of Omeprozole and I was considering in stopping! The Doctor told me basically I should never stop taking the daily tablets and because I have Barrett’s I would take them for the rest of my life, have a Endoscopy every two years with Biopsies taken until I reach the age of 75, cause she said if I reach 75 then hey I wont get Cancer from Gerd! All well and good but I’m 41 years old and truthfully I don’t want to be taking Omeprozole after reading some of these stories on here, I don’t drink booze, and I finally think I’ve given up smoking after 27 years!
I haven’t smoked or drank booze for 78 days, the Doctor also said if you have Barrett’s then you definitely shouldn’t smoke and that scared me into not smoking! I’ve started a fitness training regime now and I’m eleven weeks into that and I’m slowly weening myself off the Omeprozole!
Apparently there is no known cure for Barrett’s so you really have to help yourself, it is a widespread problem in the population but most people don’t even know they have it, unless you have had a camera Endoscopy down your throat then people are unaware?
Basically watching what you have to eat sucks but exercise and don’t smoke or drink booze and your half way there to helping yourself, all the best and Good Luck.

I have been having bad memory problems. It’s even hard to find the words to tell what I want to say. I just turned 24, and I have bad acid reflux. I started taking Prilosec 60mg XR once a day about 2 or 3 months ago. I can’t even remember. I find myself not able to think of the next word in the sentence. I stand there like a idiot for 30 seconds or more sometimes. Sometimes the word comes to me next week. This is the only medicine I’m on right now, so it has to be causing memory problems. I have also become a little more depressed, but I don’t know if that’s related to the medicine. I used to be sharp as a whip, and now I feel so dull. I feel like I’m a different person.
I don’t know what to do to make the acid reflux go away, but I know I can’t continue to take this medicine. The effect on my memory is very unhelpful. I feel like a friggin’ vegetable.
Also, I started having joint pain a little over a month ago. The doctor called it a virus, but I don’t know now. It might have been this medicine getting into my system. My back was so arthritic that I had to stay in bed for a few days. I actually cried tears because the pain was so bad. I couldn’t walk very well for the first 2 weeks. I fell over a few times because of severe joint pain. It was so intense that my legs just gave out.
I have shortness of breath. I even feel like I have asthma, and I never felt that way. I’ve always been healthy.
This pain is much worse than the acid reflux. I decided that I’m going to stop this medication. The side-effects (now that I know what they are) aren’t worth it.

Hi all! I have the very same story of heartburn that most of you have mentioned, yet I would like to share my self-experience of having this life-disturbance for years. I am 22 and I have been suffering from heartburn for at least 10 years! The heartburn has gotten so serious for the past 5 years that I will suffer the worrying and harsh heartburn every moment of the day if I don’t take a 40mg Omeprazole every morning before or after my breakfast.
It really interferes my life and joys! I have been to several doctors and have taken a large variety of pills, syrups, and capsules that relieves the heartburn but none of them has soothed me yet. I have also tried home-made remedies but they haven’t cured the burning too. All what I have tried yet calms down the heartburn as far as I take these remedies regularly on daily basis, but if I forget taking a 40mg Omeprazole just for one day, (I have been taking one per day for 3 years) I will have to suffer- that is for sure!
What else I have discovered is that perhaps heartburn is something I have inherited from my father. My father also has a long lasting heartburn problem. My uncle died a few months ago because of esophagus cancer who had suffered serious heartburn as well. It is scientifically approved that serious heartburn may lead to cancer!
Moreover, although I haven’t experienced any side effects while having Omeperazole, but I am sure of experiencing some of the side effects you have enlisted above.
I am really concerned about having serious heartburn for such a long while. I wish someone will leave a reply for what I am going to leave here. Thanks!

I take 20MG omeprazole every day. What helps me avoid acid stomach is to eat mostly RAW foods which contain lots of natural digestive enzymes… I drink raw milk and eat raw yogurt each day, all day long, and sometimes eat a raw salad during the day with no meat. Also I eat raw cashews and raw pecans… raw blueberries, raw oranges and during the summer, lots of raw watermelon. This means no acid stomach all day long.
Every day about supper time I eat some solid cooked vegetables and occasionally a small portion of cooked chicken or turkey. I am 5’9″ and weigh 170 which is about what I was at 17 (48 years ago). I never eat fried foods, onion rings, pastries or crap like that, and do not smoke or drink. I never drink coffee because it is stomach-acid producing. I say go RAW, RAW, RAW.

I have been on Prilosec 20 mg for 10 years and I have noticed trouble swallowing recently as I am trying to get off Prilosec. After whiplash leading to a discovery that I had Ankylosing Spondylitis, 6 months of severe bursitis in both hips and ending up at a Naturopath after failed attempts with regular doctors, PT, massage and chiro I am finally getting better.
The arthritis is improving due to changing my diet following food allergy testing revealed reactions to all dairy, eggs, sugar etc. I also went gluten free which relieves inflammation. The naturopath really wanted me off the Prilosec which I knew I needed also but didn’t know how to do since I NEED it.
She put me on D-Limonene which is orange oil. Somehow the oil coats the stomach and esophagus and really helps with reflux. I haven’t been able to drink orange juice for years so I was skeptical but it does work! I take the orange oil capsules every other day and the Prilosec every other day. This was supposed to last for 20 days than quit the Prilosec completely. I can’t get off of it, but at least I am only taking half as much as before.
Since I have cut back on the Prilosec I am having trouble swallowing. My throat feels numb and weak. I swallow and most of the food goes down but some is left in my throat. I am getting scared about this as it feels like I got Novacain at the dentist all the time now. I am reading that this might have something to do with acid reflux but wondered if anyone else has had a similar experience? This could also be caused by a food allergy or pressure on the spine from the Spondylitis but the timing is too coincidental. It has happened just as I am cutting back on Prilosec.
I have been taking lots of D, sublingual B-12 (since I probably could not absorb it), fish oil, serrapeptase (AMAZING enzyme), arnica gel, msm spray, VAXA Arthritin blend, Magnesium etc. but didn’t start any of them recently.
Any similar experiences? Thanks, and good luck!

Pamela, your symptoms may be due, at least in part, from a deficiency in magnesium. Omeprazole inhibits it absorption, as well as vitamins B12 and B6. Get you red cell magnesium content checked by a blood test through your doctor. An ordinary test for magnesium in serum will not tell you if you are deficient. Good luck.

Yes, I am having these symptoms after 5 years on it, plus I ma having heart problems… I too was athletic, now I hurt all the time, and am weak, breathless, and with all over pain. I can’t eat much either.
I think antibiotics taken with it did it to me.
my name is Pam

Pantaprozole worked for me for a month, then I got sicker and sicker and sicker until I was afraid to eat anything at all! I had heartburn that kept me awake at night, slept sitting up, couldn’t lean over. I went back to omemprazole & am now weaning off of it using apple cider vinegar, taking Betaine HCL when I eat protein & anxiously awaiting the day that I do not have to suffer the side effects of Prilosec! Taking magnesium supplements has stopped muscle cramping, I feel like I am digesting food for the first time in years, b-12 is being absorbed & I have more energy.

I am also having a rash on my forearms that is still getting worse after not taking 20 mg omeprazol daily. How long did it take for your rash to go away?

So, to follow-up on my post from December…I went to my next appt on Jan. 16th to have an allergy panel test done and visit with my ENT doc. I was still doing ok without the drug and with changing my diet. My throat and sinuses would still act up from time to time, but the cough had diminished quite a bit. The allergy panel revealed I’m allergic to cats, dogs, dust mites, and really allergic to mold.
I asked for a food allergy test too. Had two vials of blood drawn. The ENT doc was ok with me refusing to take the drug and was glad my symptoms were decreasing. We didn’t do another scope… not sure if the doc saw that I now had that awful HSA insurance or if he felt the test wasn’t necessary. The food allergy test revealed that I’m allergic to all things dairy and eggs! So, now not only has my diet been changed for the reflux, which is a symptom of food allergies, but I’m no longer drinking cow milk or eating anything with eggs!
Almond milk is my new best friend! No more cheese, yogurt, ice cream, anything dairy. Breakfast is a protein smoothie with almond milk now. I’m glad I have an answer as to why I had been feeling icky the past two to three years. I’m adjusting to the new diet, have a renewed sense of wanting to be healthy at 48 and look forward to all my new smoothie recipes! Good luck to you all struggling with this drug and your health. I will be thinking of you!

JP, don’t try to come off it instantly – you will suffer a rebound within a couple of days and it will last for some time. If you must come off it talk to your doctor first – you will need to do it gradually.

I have been reading all of the comments regarding omeprozole. Has anyone had any problems with dropping items? For the past three weeks or so, I feel like things are slipping through my fingers. I have been on omeprazole dr 40mg. twice a day for about five months. I am going to get off of it tomorrow.

I finally got off of Omeprozole just by weaning myself off of it and changing my diet. But the diet just wasnt satisfactory. It stopped the reflux, but wasnt worth eating!! But now I have found a substitute for the omeprozole that works great and I dont have any side effects and I am losing weight. My wife has also switched to Pantoprazole and her reflux is finally under control and it wasnt with the omeprozole.

After over ten years on Prilosec with dosage as high as 40 mg twice a day where I suffered memory problems, the doctor recently changed up my meds, taking me off the Prilosec. Within weeks my memory significantly improved. Until then, I’d never considered a possible connection. Since coming off the Prilosec I’ve had a couple of bouts of uncontrolled reflux where I reached for my old friend, the most recent of which was last night. Today while playing Bridge I had difficulty bidding and playing due to memory problems. After experiencing this same phenomenon on two other occasions, I firmly believe there is a direct link between Prilosec and memory problems. I’m ready to do whatever is necessary to make sure I’m never tempted to reach for it again!

I have been on prilosec 40 mg. for 11 years now. I was on Nexium for a year before that but insurance would no longer pay for it. I was outgoing and active and in very good shape. I had a hital hernia which called gerd. I have gained over 100 lbs. generally about 10 to 15 lbs a year. I am exhausted all the time, I barely leave my home anymore. I have asked several doctors if this medicine was causing me this things.
They assured me that it was not, but as I grew more and more tired and gained more and more weight even with healthy eating and regular daily walks and bike riding I knew it was this medication. It is the only thing I take. I have been pumping vitamin C and B12 into me for years trying to gain back some energy, but they do not digest and do no good as even this article states.
I am furious that I have gained so much weight and been so miserable for so long because doctors do not want to help me they just want to give out easy fixes and do not care about my quality of life at all! I am getting ready to have surgery to correct the value that was dissolved by acid and correct the hernia so I can get off of these pills. I cannot bare the heartburn and misery without them now. The surgery is intense, I will not be able to eat solid foods for 3 to 4 months, but it will be worth it~! I want my life back~!

Please tell me – has anyone who has tried to wean themselves of omep experienced irregular heart rhythm? I have. I originally thought it was because omep depletes the body of magnesium and magnesium assists in the control of heart rhythm. But having experimented with magnesium supplements I find that the arrhythmia is linked to the omep. My suspicion is that coming off it produces an initial excess of acid production which irritates the upper stomach and this can be sensitive to food intake or even gas which effects the vagus nerve and hence produces arrhythmia. Anybody any experience or knowledge that might help us understand this symptom?

Try drinking pure aloe vera gel…that’s what my DO recommends.

Response to JD. I think you nail it with “love affair” with Prilosec, since I suffered for over 10 years with increasing GERD symptoms. When I found that this worked, I was dancing for joy. I still am, but I am also going to take seriously any changes that I notice. It is rather frightening to hear all the problems you, and others, have had. Are you taking anything now, or do you no longer have acid reflux symptoms? I am wondering if, after about a year on this, I should talk to my gastro doctor about changing to another drug for a period of time, and work through different drugs to keep from having increased problems from any one drug.
As I stated, I will probably have to take drugs the rest of my life for this to keep from having the Barrett’s Esophagus from progressing to cancer. Rock and a hard spot. There is nothing physical that they can find to cause the GERD… no hiatal hernia or sphincter issues (except that, of course, it is not always staying closed, but the muscle is good). This means that there is nothing that they can do short of control the reflux. I hope that you continue without problems.

hi the only side affect I am experiencing with this drug pantoprazole is a slight headache. Hope this helps yeah if anyone else has any information on side effects please share.

I had been on Omeprazole and when it started making my skin smell like plastic, I quit it. I was on 40 mg daily. When I was on 20 mg daily I didn’t have this symptom.
The doctor switched me to Pantoprazole three days ago. He wants me on it all the time for Barretts syndrome.
Anyone have any experience with this drug?

Hey all I am 38 and have been taking losec (omneprasole) for ten years with noticeable weight gain 30kgs things were all going good tye first couple of years but symptoms gradually reappeared so the doctor increased my 20mg to 40mg twice a day which didn’t work for long then symptoms reappeared I also during this time tried apple cider vinegar and active honey which to didn’t make that much difference then my doctor sent me to a GI specialist and he investigated through endoscopy revealing that my sphincter didn’t close properly he also took other biopsies. Now he also told me to completely avoid carbonated drinks of any kind, no alcohol, peppermint, caffeine teas as well with caffeine, spicy food and tomatoes etc, avoid high fat foods, no chocolate he also changed my medication to pantoprazole 20mg and mentioned that I would probably have to have surgery to tighten the sphincter in 10 years time if not before if my symptoms did not improve.
Now I have changed my medication and followed the do not eat or drink list above strictly. I am also a non smoker but have introduced more alkaline foods to my diet and less acid forming foods only eat red meat once a week and had also been told that my biopsies tested positive for ceoliac disease so now I am also gluten free which is not a major and am also eating a lot of whole foods and very little processed I am and feel like a new person I have been able to half my pantoprasole to 20mg and have lost 12kgs and counting so hopefully I will be able to avoid the operation which is also not always successful but they are all the time making advancement to. Do hope my story helps someone

I am very glad you are feeling better. Initially it did the same thing for me.I was diagnosed with a hialtal hernia, duodenitis, and GERD after an endoscopy. I was prescribed 20 mg/daily. About 2 1/2 years into my love affair with prilosec I developed terrible muscle pain, urinary tract infections, high blood pressure and memory loss – I never put it together and went along like this for another year and 1/2. Recently I stopped prilosec – 12 days ago and I had terrible acid reflux and heartburn for 2 days nothing since then. I have had yellowish stools since the day after I stopped because my body is not absorbing food properly due to the reintroduction of stomach acid and other chemicals that were suppressed.
My memory has already improved. My blood pressure has gone down some, my heart rate has gone down, my bladder is no longer inflamed and my muscles done hurt anymore. I would try anything else before I would ever swallow another Prilosec again. Prilosec is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

I have been taking Omeprazole for about 6 months now, and after reading all the comments here, I had to say that this drug has, so far, made my life worth living again. I have had none of the problems that others here have suffered. The only thing I have is relief. I had acid indigestion for about 10 years, and got to the point that I was waking up about every hour in such pain that I had to get up and take Tums. I started to vomit blood in the morning. That was when I finally went to the doctor, who sent me to a gastroenterologist. An endoscopy showed Barrett’s Esophagus and I was put on Omeprazole. It immediately gave me relief and I have no symptoms of GERD.
I will watch for any of the problems that others here have encountered, but I expect to be on this or another drug for the rest of my life. I finally feel normal again.

I had a problem with GERD, I took Prilosec, but I developed a skin rash on my face, chest and back. I discovered that GERD was related to excess weight and I began a 0 carb diet. I am now 35 pounds lighter, my goal is to reach 175. I am more than half way there. Weight loss seems to be the best treatment for GERD, as I seem to be much better. No drugs, no rashes and best of all, no more GERD.

I was just diagnosed with Laryngopharyngeal Reflux, which the medical profession calls the silent reflux. I didn’t have any heartburn or indigestion, but I had a persistent cough and couldn’t ever get my throat clear. The scope showed lesions on my esophagus. I was also told I had allergies. So I was handed a behavior modification sheet which told me to restrict citrus fruits and juices, tomatoes, chocolate, caffeine, mint, fatty and fried foods.
And elevate the head of my bed 4-6 inches. And no eating 3 hours before going to bed. Oh, and exercise! Which they tell everyone to do no matter the condition.
I was prescribed 40mg a day of Prilosec and a nasal spray for allergies. The doctor said it would take a while for the Prilosec to kick in. The pharmacist said that was a pretty high dose, which put me on alarm.
I found myself on this site and I’m glad I did! What an eye-opener! Not a fan of prescription drugs.
On Wednesday night I skipped my evening snack after supper.
On Thursday morning I took a Prilosec and skipped my orange juice at breakfast. I did not cough once on Thursday! This was such a huge change. I normally had two choking coughing fits before I’d get to work!
On Friday I didn’t take anything, skipped my snack the night before and the orange juice, still no cough! I’m still clearing my throat, but that annoying choking cough is gone!
So, I think I’ll skip the Prilosec/Omperazole, alter my eating habits, workout, drink more water, take a digestion supplement and see how it goes. My follow-up is in January for another scope and test for allergies.
Good luck to those struggling with this drug. Thank you for your comments! They helped me make my decision!

Thanks :) I’ve decided not to take it and I’m going back to the doctor’s to see what I can do to make it better naturally. :)

Grace, I would certainly think twice about this medicine. Alter your diet as best you can working with your parents on restricting citrus fruits, pop, fried foods, fast foods. If there is a nutrition store nearby, ask your parents to take you there. The employees of these places are very knowledgeable and can help you find a supplement to help with digestion. Try these changes first and see what happens. Good luck to you!

Grace, I would try and get by without going on it. While most people with chronic side effects in these comments probably don’t get them directly from Omeprazole or other PPI’s, and the vast majority of people take it every day without complications, I’m a firm believer that anything you do to change your body’s natural balance knocks something else out somewhere else.
I was on Omeprazole for about 5 years, started feeling bad near the end in various ways, now I’ve been off it for about 12 months, controlling reflux with Gaviscon and low-fat / low-sugar / low-acid food, which is actually a lot easier than it sounds and makes me feel better in many other ways.
I’d say – take it if you have to. Try not to, or just take one if you know you’re going to eat and drink lots of rich food.

I’m 14 years old and have just been prescribed Omeprazole for my regular acid reflux that I get everyday, whatever I eat. I’ve just been reading the effects that people have had and I’m not sure whether to start taking it. Do you think It’s a good idea for me to start taking it? I haven’t taken any yet, because my parents think its a bad idea.

I have just started omeprazole 40mg a day for three weeks due to stomach reflux. I have no significant side effects other than weight gain. Within a week, I gained 2 kg and it’s not going down no matter what I do.
I have a high metabolism rate and usually can lose weight easily. However, nothing helps now. Not jogging or skipping or anything else. My weight just seems to keep on increasing.
Now that I have read the comments here I am more than ever sure that all these are cause by Omeprazole. I will start reducing my dosage to 20mg a day for a week then alternate days as I am worried about the withdrawal symptoms being described here.
I have try to maintain a healthy, in other words bland diet by having porridge almost every other day and these have helped.
I guess having a change in diet will really help in acid reflux.

In answer to CL:
I was taking Omeprzole 20 mg daily… because my doctor told me to when he saw what he thought was a “pre cancerous” condition in my oesophagus. I was NOT having any reflux problems enough to keep me awake. Later he upped it to 40 mg daily. I did that for a few weeks and my skin started smelling funny so I decided it was NOT GOOD. I tried quitting “cold turkey” but the reflux was terrible. So I decided to just go back to 20 mg a day and then after two weeks I went to 20 mg every other day. At the same time I worked on changing my diet with the following acronym, ABCs.
A is for “Watch out for Acidic foods”, like tomatoes, carbonated drinks, sugary foods. etc. B is for Bland, try to eat bland things like Yoghurt, Potatoes, non fried fish and chicken and even beef, Stay away from ANY fried food. C is for Carbohydrates, eliminate them from your diet because they make you hungry for more food which is not what you need.
Yes, the potatoes I mentioned earlier are carbohydrates but don’t seem to cause any reflux OR HUNGER later. The little s is for Sugar, stay away from sugar as much as possible. After about a month like this I found that I only needed the Omeprazole as a preventative and now only take it before going out for Mexican food or after I have done something stupid, but very delicious.
I have been off the Omeprezole except for occasional 20 mg doses, now for 6 months and my reflux is essentially cured. The diet does it. I do occasionally treat myself to food that isnt on the list, but it is not a regular thing like it used to be. Yesterday we had a Greek meal at a Greek Festival and I didnt have any reflux, but I took two Tums before going to bed, just in case.

I went to the doctor with constipation and a feeling of nausea every time I had a bowel movement. He ordered a small bowel series and Upper GI. When the nurse called with the results she said I had marked reflux, a hiatal hernia of the esophagus, marked erosion and scarring and told me that my esophagus muscle was not working correctly.
The doctor put me on Omeprazole 40mg daily right away and they sent me to a gastroenterologist for an endoscopy and biopsies. I had those done and the office called to tell me I did not have cancer and to continue to take the Omeprazole. They ended the conversation by saying I should call them if I needed them. What happened to the first list of problems I was told I had. Is Omeprazole a drug that can fix all of that? I still have nausea every time I have a bowel movement.
The only side effects I have noticed from the Omeprazole are weight gain, swelling or bloating of the stomach and diarrhea. Has anyone out there experienced this? Trying to decide what to do next. Very confused and a little miserable. Thanks – KK

I want to quit taking omeprazole because I am concerned about the drug depleting my calcium levels. Does anyone have any luck with any natural products, if so which ones? I also tend to have diverticulitus, so am usually miserable in one of the two problem areas.

I have read that peppermint and all mints are the worst possible herb for GERD. Mint relaxes the valve and allows the stomach acid to enter the esophagus. Try omitting all those peppermint oil capsules.

I went to an ear, nose and throat doctor and he suggested the cough could be from acid reflux. He recommended Omeprazole 20 mg. and I took it according to the directions on the box. At first my cough did stop but I was gaining 1 pound a day for awhile, I stopped after the first 14 day doze and my weight came down. In the interim (during the four week off period) The ear, nose, throat doc wanted me to go to an allergist, I guess to confirm the cough was not from an allergy , and it was found that I had no allergies. But the allergist then wanted me to take omprazole for 4 to 6 weeks straight and then twice a week. I started taking it before the four week wait that the box suggested and that is when everything got worse.
I still had the cough and got all the acid reflux symptoms which I had never had and for the first time in my life, after a meal, food came back up my throat.
I am not taking that stuff ever again. I am trying to eat healthfully and get my stomach and throat back in shape. All I ever had was a cough and now I really feel crummy.
But, one wonders, if the doctors suspected acid reflux why did they not suggest an Gastroenterologist! Makes one wonder…

Have taken omep. when out tried baking soda 1t 1/2 class water drinking large swallow, wait for gas relief 1 min now use as method for relief.

Hi, just read your email. I suffered exactly the same. Apparently stopping the acid makes the bacteria in your stomach multiply, which in turn causes lots of pain and bloating and constipation. As soon as i gave up omeparazole I got my life back. x

If you are trying to wean yourself off this drug, or any PPI, you must do it incrementally, otherwise you will experience an acid surge which is often worse than the acid level you have been trying to reduce. H2 blockers are a good alternative to try. One of the main reasons for the lethargy and fatigue experienced while on these drugs is their side effects of vitamin B12 deficiency, B6 deficiency, and magnesium deficiency – singularly or in combination. I’d advise everyone on PPIs to try supplementing on these nutrients to test their efficacy for relieving these symptoms. Talk to your doctors too. Hope this helps – it certainly has with many of my patients.

CV – I too have noticed memory loss and lethargy. But I have been taking Omeprazole for at least 40 years (recently increased from 20mg to 40mg! So I’m not sure whether the symptoms are caused by the drug or just plain old aging. I am a young 72 years!

I’m glad you’re better. I got off Prilosec cold turkey 40 days ago. I went through anxiety, panic attacks, all the stomach problems reported by others, and continue to suffer from insomnia. I cannot sleep. When did you begin to feel good after you we’re completely off the drug? I appreciate your response. Deb

I have been on Prilosec/OTC since 2000. I have ran out a couple of times with terrible results.
If I miss 2 or more days, I am in agony with no sleep resulting in a forced vomit for relief.

I have been taking 20MG Omeprazole for years with no apparent side effects. Within the past year, I have experienced severe pain in my left leg. Apparently an obscure bursa in my hip fills with fluid and causes pain in the leg. The bursa has been aspirated several times. The physician refills the bursa with steroids and pain killers and I get instant relief that lasts for a week or two. Has anyone experienced a similar problem that is solved by leaving off the Omeprazole?

I certainly hope you’re better. I’m in a similar situation. I took Prilosec for 4 years and have been off them for 39 days. I’ve suffered through the anxiety and panic attacks, and of course the rebound hyper acidity. But now I can’t sleep. I have pulsatile
Tinnitus which doesn’t allow me to sleep. Doctors think you’re making all these symptoms up, and the anxiety they believe cannot come from a drug to treat GERD. I can’t sleep and I think I’m going to lose my mind.

I hope you’re well by now. How long did it take you to get better from withdrawal of Prilosec? I’m going through it now. It’s been 6 weeks. I can’t sleep and have pulsating tinnitus.

I think I am suffering from fatigue due to omeprazole. I am planning to stop using is for 2 weeks now to test this hypothesis.

I used to have heart palpitation all the time. Had an episode of stomach ache felt like ulcer, went to the doctor and asked to be tested for H-Pylori infection. The doc. refused to test me, told me it was not H-Pylori, and prescribed Prilosec, which did not help at all. I waited a few days in pain, made another appointment, saw a different doctor.
I insisted to be tested for H-Pylori, since I know this bacterium caused 90% of all ulcers and 80% of people with stomach cancer have this bacterium in their gut. And the bacteria infection can be cheaply treated with antibiotics. The doctor ordered the anti-body blood test reluctantly, the test came back positive and I was put on antibiotics immediately to eradicate H-Pylori infection. I am now H-Pylori free, and my heart rate has dropped by 10%, and I have not had any heart palpitation episodes since. I’ve had heart palpitation for 30 years!
From my own personal experience I think there is a link between the H-pylori, but since there wouldn’t be any money to be made to treat people for H-Pylori infection (that will deem lot of the antacid drugs unnecessary since you can CURE ulcers by eradicating the bacteria), so I doubt anyone will study the link. Dr. Nina Salama in Seattle studies H. Pylori, she has some interesting information about H-pylori.
I had to push my doctors really hard to treat me, they flat out refuse to treat ulcers by eradicating the h-pylori bacterium. I believe had I not push so hard, I would still be in pain and popping prilosec pills all the time. The heart palpitation was just an extra bonus from the treatment. In any case, I am glad I did it.
Good luck for people who are still dealing with the health issues.

Sage words of advice, JA. I am stepping back gradually. First, I must tell you all that I was incorrect in my dosage – I was taking 20mg per day, not 40. So, I’ve cut the 20mg in half and now take 10mg per day. It has only been 5 days and so far not much for withdrawal symptoms and no GERD – but, I will continue this dosage for a couple of months, then follow with 10mg every other day for a couple of months. After that, we’ll see.
I was in the hospital this summer for ten days because of some freakish heart failure incident – the meds caused me to lose about half of the 40 lbs I needed to and that has also helped lessen my GERD symptoms. If some GERD problems reappear I shall supplement with a well-chewed apple. Day 5 and counting…

The sad thing here is that we are none of us qualified to evaluate this. We are just spitting in the wind and there is no one listening to us that could make comments that might be useful. There are no Doctors on this discussion. The blind leading the blind.
I quit it because I didn’t like the odour that it gave my hair and skin. BUT maybe that is not a reasonable reason. But there is no one here to say Yea or Nay! The trade off is that I can not eat the foods I like. Is body odour more important than food? How serious is the body odour?
So why am I here. I may as well look elsewhere for my advice.

LauraAnn and RP and all on here- Sadly Dr’s don’t have a clue. They all say “no no that’s not from Prilosec”. Or “Prilosec doesn’t do that”. “That’s not a side effect of Prilosec”.
You’d think we are all crazy and just making all this stuff up. I was never sick. Never had ANY of the crazy things and symptoms that came AFTER I started this drug. I am contacting the FDA about it. And it’s already on the FDA watch list.
Some good advice for you guys. Don’t EVER cold turkey stop this drug. I tried to and ended up in the hospital struggling to breathe and to swallow at all. I’ve been off it for 6 months now and still not completely back to normal and I gradually came off it the second time. VERY gradual. It does something to our bodies at a cellular level. It changes the chemistry of our body. It’s not all coincidences that these things started after starting Prilosec.
Good luck- JA

A week ago, after reading the comments on this site, I went cold turkey and quit Omeprozole. This first week I was thinking I might have to go back on it because of stomach cramps and GERD. But on the 7th say I am now ok and managing my GERD with Tums and its getting better daily.
When the Dr prescribed it he scared me by telling me that I had some syndrome in my oesophagus that in less than one percent of people could progress into cancer, I have already had cancer (prostate) and beat it but didn’t want a return match!! So I took the stuff for 6 months at 20mg then two weeks ago he upped the dose to 40mg.
That was when I noticed that my skin and hair and urine stunk like burning plastic. My cat noticed it also. I could not see that such a thing could be good for me. So I stopped it cold turkey a week ago. The smell was gone in 5 days and my stomach distress is decreasing daily… almost gone at day 7.
So if you try to go cold turkey, it may take a while with lots of Tums to get to the end of the tunnel.
75 year old Male.

After taking Pepcid AC almost every day for the past 5+ years, I figured I should try the OTC Omeprazole. Less than a week into it I noticed yellow bruises on my shoulder (I had a massage, but had never had that happen). A few days later my right shin was all yellow and bruised and the side of my heel was even blue-ish. I didn’t recall bumping my shin (but must have).
I googled side effects of Prilosec and saw that bruising and yellowing of the skin is listed. I stopped around day 12 and had the stabbing stomach pains that day. Fine since and the bruising is slowly subsiding (49yr old male with no other health issues)

I am stunned by what I am reading here! Never once have my Dr.(s) said anything about possible side effects from taking Omeprazole – I have GERD due to a weak esoph. sphincter muscle. I have been on 40mg daily for about 3 years and I have wondered what the hell could be wrong with my memory (which used to be very good), why I itched all time, adrenaline spikes (which I had decided were due to anxiety disorder), fatigue and weight gain, etc. I never once thought any of these were due to Omeprazole! Holy mackerel! I’m about to turn 50 and want to get off of it – but, I’ve got cardiac issues that have complicated things and I am afraid to go off Omep. ‘Cold Turkey’. I wonder if stepping down to 20mg daily to start and after a couple of months stepping back further while supplementing w/ licorice and slippery elm might ease the transition.
I am also afraid that my GERD issues will return. Thank you, everyone, for your willingness to share your experience – it opened my eyes and helped me to see the cause and effect of many symptoms. Here’s to getting the pharmaceutical monkeys off our backs.

I have not heard anyone say anything about my symptom. But I have tested the theory and find it is a real symptom.
I was taking 20mg daily for about 6 months and recently changed to 40mg daily.
My cat of 10 years suddenly started licking my hair and she has NEVER done that before. I started smelling burning plastic everywhere. Then after five days I finally figured out that it was ME that smelled. My urine smelled like burning plastic. The stuff was coming out my skin and hair!!!
I now look back and realize that there were symptoms before, but at the 20 mg dose they were not offensive so I brushed them off, not knowing they were related to the medicine. Foods tasted different and there was a chemical taste in my mouth similar to the smell I noticed on my skin.
I have quit omeprozole, the smell is gone and my cat no longer licks me. I will not take it again. It can’t be good to be having chemicals coming out your skin.

I’ve been on Omeprazole for 9 months or more. I took it last thing at night otherwise my food did not digest, and I got bad stomach pain. I have hiatus hernia and some duodenitis was observed during a recent gastroscopy. I had also a lot of heartburn with upper chest pain and discomfort. Also a lot of noisy belching.
I already have stomach polyps, also noted on gastroscopy, which might be due to 10 years on Ranitidine. A side-effect of acid suppression. My GP says that the PPI works much better and I should take them indefinitely. I already have osteoporosis and although I am taking supplements for this how much I am absorbing on the Omeprazole is debatable and I’d like to get off them mainly as this worries me.
I have a swollen stomach every night which is not much down even in the morning and much gas and bloating. Very uncomfortable and embarrassing in company, lso feel tearful and depressed, forget words and the names of things. Lacking interest in my hobbies, not like myself at all. Lately my knees hurt really bad going up and down stairs, and they never did before. I am not overweight, but GP says probably osteoarthritis.
If I can kick the PPI drugs and the knees improve, then I will prove her wrong.
I have a bed wedge which helps greatly with the reflux at night, although you need to put a heavy pillow behind your knees to support the hips and lower back. It took some time to get used to sleeping on an incline, but used to it now.
I am not going to ‘cold turkey’ but reduce the PPI with the help of ranitidine alternate days until I am off them, God willing, as they give too many side -effects and I am still suffering anyway.
Good luck to you all!

How much apple cider did you take and how often.

I’ve recently been to see a gastrologist after suffering from terrible bloating. I had taken omeporazole for 6 years and forgot for a day. The bloating vanished and returned as soon as I took another pill, so Ive stopped taking them and I have been absolutely fine :) The gastrologist explained that the omeperazole stops the acid forming in your stomach but the acid kills off the bacteria. So people can be prone to the bloating affect the bacteria gives, he said it can be very painful and the omeperazole can do more harm than good in some people.

I have been taking Omeprazole for 1 1/2 weeks and have noticed soarness and bleeding in my mouth. I am a person who eats spicy and hot food and the hotness never bothered me, but since I have been taking this medicine, I noticed my mouth is very sensitive…burning irritation above the mouth and soreness from inside of the throat along the back of my gums.
Has anyone had this problem??? and what did you do??

Hi Greg,
I’ve been on omeprazol for two months and I’m feeling some palpitations (very weak but it still makes me nervous) I want to know How long it takes after stopping the medication for the palpitations to disappear.
I’m calling my Dr. this Monday to ask her, but still want to know your experience.

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