DEAR DOCTOR K: For years I've been taking a PPI twice a day for heartburn. My doctor wants me to cut back, or stop altogether. But the idea frightens me. Do you think it's possible?
DEAR READER: To anyone tormented by frequent heartburn, not taking your daily tablet -- or tablets -- of omeprazole (Prilosec) or lansoprazole (Prevacid) might seem like a scary idea. These and similar drugs, known as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), are the foundation of treatment for heartburn, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).