Volume 45 (2009) Issue 2 Pages 125-130
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which are used for the treatment of several inflammatory disorders including rheumatoid arthritis, are well known to cause gastroduodenal mucosal lesions as an adverse effect. Recently, the serious problem of NSAID-induced small intestinal damage has become a topic of great interest to gastroenterologists, since capsule endoscopy and double-balloon enteroscopy are available for the detection of small intestinal lesions. Such lesions have been of great concern in clinical settings, and their treatment and prevention must be devised as soon as possible. Proton pump inhibitors (PPI), such as lansoprazole and omeprazole, show a potent anti-secretory effect. PPIs also have a gastroprotective effect, independent of their anti-secretory actions, which is probably mediated by inhibition of neutrophil functions as well as antioxidant actions. Administration of lansoprazole reduced the severity of the intestinal lesions in a dose-dependent manner, but omeprazole had no effect. The amount of heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) protein in the intestinal mucosa was significantly increased by lansoprazole, but not by omeprazole. These results suggest that lansoprazole, but not omeprazole, ameliorates indomethacin-induced small intestinal ulceration through upregulation of HO-1/carbon monoxide. Therefore, lansoprazole may be useful for preventing the adverse effects of NSAIDs not only in the stomach but also in the small intestine.