Infection risk and management strategies for patients with cirrhosis taking proton pump inhibitors

Beth Zerr, Alejandro Vazquez, Brian L. Erstad

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: The purpose of this review is to discuss infectious disease-related adverse effects associated with long-term proton pump inhibitor (PPI) therapy in patients with cirrhosis and to provide recommendations for appropriate use and choice of PPI when such therapy is indicated. SUMMARY: Long-term PPI therapy in patients with cirrhosis increases the risk of infections, with infections in turn increasing the risk of mortality in this patient population. Expert recommendations include restricting long-term PPI use in cirrhosis to patients with appropriate gastrointestinal indications, using a PPI for the shortest possible duration and at the lowest possible dose, and avoiding PPIs with unfavorable pharmacogenetic properties. CONCLUSION: Long-term PPI use in patients with cirrhosis has been associated with increased infections. The risk of adverse effects in observational studies, including decompensation, severe infection (especially spontaneous bacterial peritonitis), and increased mortality, appears to increase as the dose and duration of PPI increase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)967-973
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of health-system pharmacy : AJHP : official journal of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists
Issue number15
StatePublished - Jul 21 2023


  • adverse effects
  • cirrhosis
  • complications
  • infectious disease
  • liver disease
  • proton pump inhibitors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacy
  • Pharmacology
  • Health Policy


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