Monday, May 05, 2008

Proton Pump Inhibitors and B12 May 2008

FHN Complementary Medicine Monthly Newsletter May 2008

Proton Pump Inhibitors and B12

Vitamin B12 deficiencies in the elderly can be quite significant and cause significant problems, from fatigue to mental disorientation, to anemias. A recent study comparing longer term use of proton pump inhibitor’s (PPI) and H2 blockers and B12 deficiencies in the elderly, showed some interesting results.

659 subjects (AGE 60-102) were studied. 54 percent of them were either on H2 blockers or PPI for an average duration of 18.2 months. B12 levels were measured in all patients including those not on either med (controls).

The group on the PPI had significant decline in their B12 status that was not was not eliminated with oral B12 supplementation. Those on the H2 blockers did not show a decline.

(author note: They used extremely low (RDA) dosages of B12 for oral supplementation which in this case certainly was not enough.)

So if have elderly patients or relatives on PPI’s, their B12 status needs to be continually monitored.


Drs. Glenn and Julie Smith

Complementary Medicine