Efficacy and safety of potassium-competitive acid inhibitors in the treatment of gastroesophageal reflux: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Scand J Gastroenterol. 2024 Jul;59(7):788-797. doi: 10.1080/00365521.2024.2349638. Epub 2024 May 14.


Background: Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a common disease caused by reflux of gastric contents to the esophagus. Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) are recommended as a first-line therapy to treat GERD. Recently, the potassium-competitive acid inhibitors have been increasingly in use in clinical practice. We aimed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of P-CABs in GERD.

Methods: We searched PubMed, the Cochrane Library, EMBASE and Web Of Science for publications regarding randomized controlled trials comparing potassium-competitive acid inhibitors to PPI monotherapy or Placebo with respect to efficacy and safety in GERD (until April 2023). The primary outcome was an absence or global symptom improvement and the incidence of adverse events in GERD. The quality of the included literature was assessed using the bias assessment tool recommended in the Cochrane Systematic Assessor's Handbook 5.1.0. We use RevMan 5.3 software for Meta-analysis, sensitivity analysis and publication bias analysis.

Results: Of the 991 screened studies, 14 studies including 4868 participants were analyzed. The ORs for the healing rates of GERD with P-CABs versus PPI/Placebo were 2.10 (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.53-2.88), additionally, 1.09 (95% CI 1.05-1.14), 1.03 (95% CI 1.00-1.06) and 1.03 (95% CI 0.99-1.06) in Weeks 2, 4, and 8, respectively. The effectiveness rate of the experimental group was significantly higher than that of the control group (RR 1.73; 95% CI 1.27-2.36). The overall OR of Incidence of adverse events with P-CABs versus PPI/Placebo was 1.08 (95% CI 0.88-1.12). Overall, the risk of bias was low to some concerns. Furthermore, sensitivity analyses confirmed the robustness of the study's conclusion.

Conclusions: Our findings suggest that potassium-competitive acid inhibitors is non-inferior to PPIs as therapy for patients with GERD. The safety outcomes for potassium-competitive acid inhibitors are similar to those for PPIs.

Keywords: Potassium-competitive acid inhibitors; gastroesophageal reflux; meta-analysis.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Gastroesophageal Reflux* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Proton Pump Inhibitors* / adverse effects
  • Proton Pump Inhibitors* / therapeutic use
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Proton Pump Inhibitors