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Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2004 Jul 15;20(2):181-8.

Six-month trial of on-demand rabeprazole 10 mg maintains symptom relief in patients with non-erosive reflux disease.

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Department of Medical Gastroenterology, Glostrup University Hospital, Denmark.



Compliance studies have shown that patients with reflux symptoms generally take their medication only when experiencing these symptoms.


To evaluate the efficacy of on-demand rabeprazole maintenance therapy in patients with non-erosive reflux disease.


This multicentre, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, withdrawal study compared 6 months of on-demand treatment with rabeprazole 10 mg vs. placebo. Adults with a history of reflux symptoms, a negative endoscopy, and > or = 3 days of moderate to very severe heartburn in the 7 days before enrollment (N = 535) entered 4 weeks of open-label, acute treatment with rabeprazole 10 mg once daily. Patients with complete symptom relief then entered the on-demand phase. The primary end-point was discontinuation due to lack of heartburn control during the on-demand phase.


Eighty-three percent (432 of 523) of patients reported complete symptom relief at the end of the acute phase. During on-demand treatment, rates of discontinuation because of inadequate heartburn control were 20% (28 of 139) for placebo vs. 6% (16 of 279) for rabeprazole (P < 0.00001). Antacid use was twofold higher in the placebo group vs. the rabeprazole group (P = 0.0009).


Rabeprazole 10 mg once daily is highly effective in acute symptom relief and as on-demand long-term maintenance therapy in non-erosive reflux disease patients.

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