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PPIs found to be of benefit for unexplained chest pain

GPs should prescribe proton pump inhibitors to patients with unexplained chest pain, a new study concludes.

Researchers found esomeprazole was significantly more effective than placebo for patients with chest pain without an established cause.

Among those with two weeks of pain or discomfort in the chest, the drug was 38.7 per cent effective, compared with a 25.5 per cent response rate with placebo.

Study leader Dr Nigel Flook, a GP at the University of Alberta Family Medicine Clinic in Edmonton, Canada, said: 'These patients have an impaired quality of life, so this is an important condition. They also develop comorbidity conditions such as depression. They worry about their symptoms but when these are beaten, it's resolved.'

Eligible patients were randomised to esomeprazole or placebo for four weeks, with 297 receiving esomeprazole and 302 placebo.

The research was presented at last month's British Society of Gastroenterology conference.

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