Use of proton pump inhibitors and risk of ischemic events in the general population

Manuela Casula, Lorenza Scotti, Federica Galimberti, Francesco Mozzanica, Elena Tragni, Giovanni Corrao, Alberico L. Catapano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and aims: A potential increased risk of cardiovascular events has been suggested for proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), the most commonly prescribed drugs for the management of upper gastrointestinal disorders. We aimed to estimate the risk of hospitalization for cardio/cerebrovascular (CV) events in a cohort of incident PPI users. Methods: A nested case-control study was carried out using regional healthcare utilization databases. For each case (hospitalization for non-haemorrhagic CV event), up-to-five controls randomly selected from the cohort were matched by gender, age at cohort entry, and index date. Exposure was estimated as recency of therapy (current, recent and past users) and number of days covered. Adjusted conditional logistic regression was used to estimate the association between exposure and outcome. Results: Among new PPI users, we identified 17,832 cases and 89,160 controls (males 64.9%; mean age 58.9 years). Cases showed a significantly higher prevalence of use of drugs for diabetes, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia than controls. Risk of CV events was significantly higher for current (OR 1.61; 95%CI 1.55–1.68) and recent users (OR 1.15; 95%CI 1.06–1.26) compared to past users. Analogous results were found stratifying for cardiovascular (ORcurrent 1.71; 95%CI 1.63–1.81) and cerebrovascular events (ORcurrent 1.43; 95%CI 1.34–1.54). The increased risk was confirmed in subgroups by antithrombotic, statin use, or exposure duration. The same analysis for H2-antagonists use showed no significant results. Conclusions: In primary care setting, PPI use was independently associated with increased risk of first-time cardiovascular event, consistent with the evidence that PPIs adversely impact vascular function, underlying the need to promote appropriate prescribing of these drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-129
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2018


  • Cardio/cerebrovascular events
  • Case-control study
  • Databases
  • Proton pump inhibitors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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