What is a Proton Pump Inhibitor
Proton pump inhibitors (which is what pantoprazole is) are part of the cell membrane that transports hydrogen ions (known as protons) across the cell membrane.
The stomach lining has cells (parietal) which produce hydrogen ions called “protons”. Proton pump inhibitors block the cells from sending these protons into the stomach.
Proton pump inhibitors (including both sodium and magnesium) are one of the most prescribed medications for stomach ailments. The smell, taste, physical sensation of food, and even the thought of food all initiate the release of acid, or protons. They do reduce the amount of acid in the stomach, but they don’t provide a permanent cure. They do not completely acknowledge the true cause of ulcers, which is likely the bacteria known as helicobacter pylori.
Parietal cells secrete acid in the stomach. Tubes in the wall of these cells allow the transport of protons from inside the cell to the stomach. The proton pump inhibitor is the perfect fit to prevent the tube from letting out any acid.
PPIs are different from H2 receptor blockers. H2 receptor blockers, or H2 antagonists, act on the hormone that triggers parietal cells into action.
Every medication we take changes something our body does naturally. Often times they mask the symptoms, other times they interfere with the normal bodily function. When trying to get relief or heal it is important to understand the underlying causes of the problem.