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Background Esophageal cancer is a cancerous tumor that develops in the esophagus. It is the 10th most common cancer and has a low survival rate. Esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) is increasing in incidence globally. Those with EAC are affected by Barrett's esophagus metaplasia, which is attributed to genetic predisposition and is more common in men. Studies suggest that gastric acid suppressants, like proton pump inhibitors and histamine-2 receptor antagonists, have anticancer properties and reduce EAC. However, other research has suggested that they are not cancer-protective, and the use of antisecretory drugs is a risk factor for developing EAC. Objective This systematic review and meta-analysis investigated the properties and risk factors associated with using gastric acid suppressants in patients with EAC. Methods This meta-analysis used the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses checklist. Information from selected articles, including the lead author's name, year of publication, study setting, sample size, and gender, was extracted and recorded into an Excel (Microsoft, Redmond, Washington) form. Statistical data included odds ratio, hazard ratio, and/or risk ratio, with a 95% CI associated with patients with EAC and receiving gastric acid suppressants. Data were compared with individuals not receiving treatment. Publication bias was assessed using Begg's and Egger's tests. Statistical analyzes used Stata 14.0 (Stata LLC, College Station, Texas). Results The initial electronic literature search retrieved 3761 titles/abstracts. Extensive screening selected 20 articles for analysis. Odds ratios associated with EAC in the individuals using gastric acid suppressants were 0.77 (95% CI, 0.49–1.22; P = 0.274) and 0.67 (95% CI, 0.39–1.29; P = 0.240) for proton pump inhibitors and 1.02 (95% CI, 0.44-2.36; P = 0.967) for histamine-2 receptor antagonists. Conclusions The results found that gastric acid suppressants do not have a protective role in EAC and are not risk factors. Future studies of confounding variables and risk factors are needed to understand what affects EAC development.


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