Prilosec, Prevacid & Nexium Have Been Linked to Increased Risk of Kidney Damage
In recent years, PPIs have become one of the most commonly prescribed classes of drugs in the United States. These drugs are typically prescribed to treat acid reflux, indigestion, and peptic ulcers. Unfortunately, a lot of people are unaware of the numerous studies that show that PPIs can cause a number of side effects, from an altered gut environment to impaired nutrient absorption, to more severe medical issues like kidney disease, cardiovascular events, and dementia. If you or a loved one has suffered any of these dangerous side effects, schedule a free consultation with a qualified PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer at The Carlson Law Firm.
The Carlson Law Firm has more than 40 years of experience representing clients all over the country who have been injured by dangerous drugs from negligent companies. We are a personal injury firm made up of more than 40 personal injury attorneys and full-time registered nurses and investigators as part of our team. A passionate PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer will fight tirelessly on your behalf to make you sure you get the compensation you deserve.
Contact The Carlson Law Firm to schedule a free consultation with a qualified PPI Kidney Lawsuit Lawyer.
What Do Prilosec, Nexium, and Other PPIs Do?
Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are available with or without a prescription. PPIs commonly treat acid-related disorders such as GERD and peptic ulcers. Although they are relatively easy to obtain and commonly used, PPIs can have severe side effects. To understand the harmful effects that PPIs can have on the human body, it’s important to understand its role in the body.
PPIs are inhibitors of proton pumps. More specifically, they stop the production of protons or potassium in parietal cells. The parietal cells are the source of hydrochloric acid and most of the water in the stomach. Heartburn is typically the result of excess production of stomach acids by these very cells. Therefore, by inhibiting this proton pump, PPIs reduce the acidity of the stomach and prevent the burning sensation of acid reflux.
But proton pumps aren’t only found in the stomach—they can be found in about every cell in your body. New studies show that while PPIs are designed to interact specifically with the proton pump in the stomach, that they are also capable of binding to proton pumps outside of the stomach. This can cause serious health issues.
What common proton-pump inhibitors available?
There are many types and brands of PPIs on the market today. Common PPIs include, but aren’t limited to:
- Prilosec (Omeprazole)
- Nexium (Esomeprazole)
- Prevacid (Lansoprazole)
If you or a loved one took any of the drugs above and experienced adverse events, contact The Carlson Law Firm. A PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer can help guide you through a civil lawsuit to get you the recovery you deserve.
Risks Associated With PPI Use
Over the years, there has been a growing concern over potential adverse effects associated with long-term PPI use. Some of these concerns include:
- Development or pneumonia
- Drug interactions
Long-term use of proton pump inhibitor increases several risks. Those risks include:
Heart: PPI users have been shown to have a significantly greater risk of heart attack than those on other antacid medication other than PPIs. The drug reduces the production of nitric oxide. This substance is a natural and promotes the dilation of the blood vessel and in turn, improves blood flow.
Kidney: The same goes for kidney disease. A study comparing patients who took PPIs to those who took another antacid medication revealed that over the course of five years, PPI users were 28 percent more likely to develop chronic kidney disease and 96 percent more likely to develop an end-stage renal disease.
Gut: PPI use reduces the amount of acid our stomachs produce which in turn reduces the amount of acid that reaches the gut. The gut requires a certain amount of acid to maintain a healthy pH balance, which is an important part of gut health. Many microorganisms that the stomach would normally destroy can make their way to the gut. Because of this, people who take PPIs have a greater chance of getting foodborne illnesses like Salmonella and Listeria. PPIs also impact a patient’s ability to absorb nutrients over time.
Brain: PPIs also have the capability to impair cognitive function. One study showed that PPI users had a 44 percent increased risk of dementia compared to those not using the drugs.
If you have developed a serious illness from taking a proton pump inhibitor, contact a PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer. We can help PPI recover proper compensation for their damages. Or we can file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of family members who have lost a loved one.
PPIs effects on the kidneys
When your kidneys fail, it means that they have stopped working well enough for you to survive without dialysis or a kidney transplant. Proton pump inhibitors are among the most common drugs worldwide. However, many people who use PPIs to treat stomach acid conditions aren’t aware of the negative side effects. As many as 70 percent of these prescriptions have been prescribed inappropriately.
In addition to CKD, PPIs may affect the body in a number of ways:
- Chronic kidney failure
- Clostridium difficile
- Acute kidney injury
- Acute interstitial nephritis
- Kidney removal
- Dialysis treatment
- Renal failure
- Transplant surgery
What is Nexium and Prilosec’s connection to chronic kidney disease?
PPIs largely impact the kidneys. In fact, there is a 20 percent to 50 percent higher risk increase for chronic kidney disease (CKD) compared to nonusers. There are several studies that link PPIs with an increased risk of chronic kidney failure. In 2016, JAMA Internal Medicine released a study that showed that PPIs result in a loss of kidney function. With PPI use, kidneys lose their ability to filter blood effectively. Over time, this condition can lead to kidney failure. Kidney failure requires a person to undergo regular dialysis and, possibly, a kidney transplant.
A study published in Kidney International show that chronic kidney failure in PPI users can occur without first experiencing acute kidney injury (AKI). The study found that among patients with chronic kidney disease, patients with AKI accounted for just half of those who develop CKD. In fact, 80 percent of PPI users did not develop acute kidney problems; which are often reversible.
Symptoms of kidney failure
If you are taking PPIs, such as Nexium or Prilosec, you are statistically at an increased risk of developing kidney failure in some form. Knowing the symptoms of chronic kidney disease can help you get the treatment you need as soon as possible. In addition, some CKD symptoms are subtle and PPI users may not know they have kidney failure symptoms. Possible kidney failure symptoms include:
- A reduced amount of urine
- Swelling in your legs, ankles and feet
- Unexplained shortness of breath
- Excessive drowsiness or fatigue
- Persistent nausea
- Pain or pressure in your chest
Acute Interstitial Nephritis
Acute interstitial nephritis (AIN) is a major cause of acute renal failure. The condition is marked by a pattern of renal injury closely associated with an abrupt deterioration in renal function. This decline is typically characterized by swelling between the kidney tubules. PPI users are twice as likely to develop AIN. The condition causes mild to severe kidney problems, including acute kidney failure. In half of these cases, urine output decreases and other signs of kidney failure appear, such as:
- Blood in the urine
- Drowsiness, confusion, coma
- Nausea, vomiting
- Swlling of any area of the body
- Weight gain from fluid retention
Kidneys are the organs that filter waste products from the blood. They are also involved in regulating blood pressure, electrolyte balance and red blood cell production in the body. As a result, kidney function is extremely important. If you or loved one suffered chronic kidney failure after using Nexium or Prilosec, contact The Carlson Law Firm. We have a PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer ready to speak with you about your case. Schedule a free consultation with a defective drug lawyer from The Carlson Law Firm today.
What is the FDA’s stance on PPIs?
The FDA continues to allow pharmaceutical companies to continue marketing and selling PPIs. In addition, doctors continue to prescribe them to patients. Patient trust in their medical providers makes it so that patients don’t question adverse effects of the drugs until its too late. The FDA believes that issuing warnings is enough to protect unsuspecting consumers from proton pump inhibitors such as Nexium and Prilosec.
Since 2010, the FDA has issued various safety warnings regarding the potential risks of long-term PPI use. In March 2011, the agency updated its safety announcement to note that patients at the highest risk for fractures received prescriptions for high doses of prescription PPIs for a year or more.
Also, the FDA has noted a risk of fractures, hypomagnesemia, clostridium difficil (associated with diarrhea), vitamin B12 deficiency, acute interstitial nephritis (AIN) and cutaneous and systemic lupus erythematosus events.
Alternatives to PPIs
Antacids are over-the-counter medications that help neutralize stomach acid. They work differently from other acid reducers; such as histamine 2 blockers and PPI—which work by reducing or preventing the secretion of stomach acid in the stomach. Common antacids include:
- Milk of Magnesia
- Alternagel, Amphojel
- Gaviscon, Gelusil, Maalox, Mylanta, Rolaids
Although PPIs can be more effective than histamine 2 (H2) blockers in treating gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), H2 blockers do not carry the same level of risks. These products are available in lower doses as an over-the-counter medication and at higher strength as prescription drugs. Common H2 blockers are:
- Famotidine (Pepcid as a prescription, Pepcid-AC as an OTC medication)
- Cimetidine (Tagamet and Tagamet-HB)
- Nizatidine (Axid and Axid AR)
- Ranitidine (Zantac and Zantac 75)
In addition, in some cases, changing simple habits might be all you need to address GERD or heartburn. Simple changes include:
- Quitting smoking
- Losing weight
- Eat smaller meals and eating more often
- Avoid tight clothing
- Don’t lie down for 3 hours after eating
- Don’t sleep flat
- Avoid food and beverages that might make symptoms worse
If you are suffering from GERD or heartburn symptoms, discuss your options with your doctor. If you took a PPI and are suffering from kidney failure, contact a PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer from The Carlson Law Firm.
How can a PPI Kidney Lawsuit Lawyer Help Me?
There have been no major verdicts or settlements in PPI kidney lawsuits because they are still in the very early stages. In August 2017, a federal panel combined PPI kidney lawsuits into a multidistrict litigation (MDL). The first bellwether trial is scheduled for Sept. 21, 2020. Bellwether trials are “test cases” for MDLs. They can measures jury responses to arguments from both, and sometimes they can shape settlements. Nexium and Prilosec lawsuits account for most of the cases.
Allegations of AstraZeneca’s Negligence
There are currently 4,725 proton pump inhibitor lawsuits filed in federal court against drugmaker AstraZeneca and several other PPI makers. These companies knew of the kidney risks for years but failed to warn people of the dangers. The lawsuit alleges that because these companies knew and failed to warn doctors, many patients did not know what questions to ask about PPIs. The allegations include:
- Deceptive advertising
- Negligent misrepresentation
- Failure to warn of PPI side effects
- Accepting kickbacks
- Designing, manufacture and selling defective products
If PPI manufactures warned patients of the dangers of their medications, patients would’ve been informed enough to choose an alternative medication to deal with heartburn,
The PPI kidney lawsuit MDL involved four manufacturers. Also, it specifies five brands of heartburn medicines that patients put patients at risk for developing kidney failure.
How do I file a Prilosec, Nexium or Other PPI Lawsuit?
If you or a loved one took Prilosec, Nexium or another drug listed and suffered kidney damage, you may be entitled to sue manufacturers to get compensation for your injuries. Patients should contact The Carlson Law Firm to get the help of a product liability lawyer who specializes in dangerous drug cases. A PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer from our firm can file a lawsuit on your behalf.
Prilosec or Nexium lawsuits can involve complex legal and medical issues. These are not cases that you should go alone or hire an inexperienced attorney. The Carlson Law Firm has more than 40 years of experience representing dangerous drug clients. We offer free consultations and will not charge you unless we win resolve your case successfully.
The Carlson Law Firm Difference
If you, or someone you love, took any brand of PPIs and have experienced kidney problems, heart problems, stomach problems or even cognitive problems, it is important that you contact a skilled product liability attorney as soon as possible. Here at The Carlson Law Firm, we understand that the side effects of prescription drugs can be life-altering.
A Carlson Law Firm PPI kidney lawsuit lawyer can advocate for clients enduring hardship as a result of injury caused by defective drugs while seeking just compensation and holding drugmakers responsible for negligence. We have a team ready to assist you 24/7 with your claim. Contact us today for a free, no obligation, consultation. Remember, you don’t pay us unless we recover for you. We care, we can help.