Millions of people suffer from occasional heartburn and take an Over-the-Counter (OTC) antacid, H2 blocker, or proton pump inhibitor to relieve the symptoms. But is that always the right thing to do? The FDA wants to make certain such products are properly used and that the public knows use of these OTC products are not without risk. In an effort to provide useful information to the public, the FDA published a page on their website that describes the types of OTC products available, discusses their proper use and provides links to pertinent information about the potential risks associated with each class of OTC “heartburn” treatments.
Of course, the Agency has concern that these OTC products are properly used, and that patients can appropriately select or deselect themselves for use. These products, like other OTC products, are not without potential side effects and risks. The longer these products remain on the market, the more that is learned about their side effects, and more is learned about the way patients select and use the products. The efforts of the FDA are admirable to inform the public about proper use of OTC products, and this is just one of the many examples of those efforts. Good job FDA! To view the new page please click here.