When it comes to addressing reflux in infants, the use of acid suppressants is trending upwards. In 2010 alone, lansoprazole was prescribed more than 500,000 times to pediatric patients 0 - 23 months of age, while ranitidine was prescribed over 690,000 times.1
Reprinted with permission from J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr.
These prescriptions can come with serious risks for infants. Acid suppression has been shown to increase the incidence of acute gastroenteritis, community-acquired pneumonia, and C. difficile infection.3,4
Is an acid suppressant the better option? That may depend on whether your patients have common infant gastroesophageal reflux (GER) or more severe gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
Regurgitation and irritability can lead parents to believe that their baby needs medication.5,6 But this may not always be the case. More than two-thirds of otherwise healthy infants experience normal uncomplicated reflux or GER.7 True GERD in infants is far less common, far more complicated, and may not require PPI therapy.
What can you do for infants with GER? Expert guidance from the AAP, NASPGHAN, and ESPGHAN states that thickened feedings and lifestyle changes are a first-line approach to manage GER.7,8
Enfamil A.R.™ is a commercially thickened formula proven in a published, randomized, controlled trial to reduce regurgitation due to reflux by more than 50%.9 It's the reflux formula recommended most by pediatricians and chosen most by parents.10
AAP = American Academy of Pediatrics; ESPGHAN = European Society for Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition; NASPGHAN = North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition; PPI = proton pump inhibitor
References: 1. Chai G et al. Pediatrics. 2012;130:23-31. 2. Barron JJ et al. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2007;45:421-427. 3. Berni Canani R et al. Pediatrics. 2006;117:e817-e820. 4. Freedberg DE et al. Clin ﬁnfect Dis. 2015;61:912-917. 5. Scherer LD et al. Pediatrics. 2013;131:839-845. 6. Hassall E. J Pediatr. 2012;160:193-198. 7. Lightdale JR et al. Pediatrics. 2013;131:e1684-e1695. 8. Vandenplas Y et al. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2009;49:498-547. 9. Vanderhoof JA et al. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2003;42:483-495. 10. Data on file, Mead Johnson Nutrition.