BACKGROUND: Studies have shown increased gastric cancer risk in users of proton pump inhibitors (PPI) and histamine-2 receptor antagonists, questioning the safety of gastric acid suppression. Therefore, we conducted a case-control study within the Scottish Primary Care Clinical Informatics Unit (PCCIU) database and a cohort study in the UK Biobank.
METHODS: In PCCIU, five controls were matched to cases diagnosed in 1999-2011, and medications were determined from GP records. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated using conditional logistic regression. In the UK Biobank, medications were self-reported at cohort entry 2006-2010, and gastric cancer ascertained from cancer registries until 2014. Hazard ratios (HR) were calculated using Cox regression.
RESULTS: PCCIU contained 1119 cases and 5394 controls. UK Biobank contained 250 cases in 471,779 participants. PPI users had a higher gastric cancer risk in PCCIU and UK Biobank when applying a 1-year lag (adjusted OR = 1.49, 95% CI 1.24, 1.80; adjusted HR = 1.28, 95% CI 0.86, 1.90, respectively), but these associations were attenuated when using a 2-year lag (adjusted OR = 1.13, 95% CI 0.91, 1.40; adjusted HR = 1.15, 95% CI 0.73, 1.82, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS: Overall, we observed little consistent evidence of an increased risk of gastric cancer with PPI use.