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The science linking painful bladder drug Elmiron and vision loss is irrefutable. It is widely accepted that the drug is toxic to the retina. However, Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals has made no attempt to remove the dangerous drug from the U.S. market.

Despite the risk of permanent blindness, the drug remains on the U.S. market. Patients prescribed Elmiron who suffered any form of vision loss are eligible to file lawsuits against manufacturer Janssen Pharmaceuticals. 

Elmiron has been on the market since the late 1990s to treat a rare condition called interstitial cystitis. It is the only FDA-approved drug on the market available for the millions of people who suffer from the condition. 

What is Elmiron?

Elmiron is a prescription drug that treats chronic pain or discomfort in the bladder called interstitial cystitis. This condition causes bladder pressure or pain that can sometimes affect the entire pelvic region. The drug works by forming a layer on the bladder wall and protecting it from harmful or irritating substances in the urine. In some cases, doctors prescribe the drug to treat osteoarthritis.

How does Elmiron cause vision loss?

Several studies have been published that found that patients who take Elmiron have high levels of toxicity that damage the retina. 

In 2018, doctors published a case study of patients who took pentosan polysulfate sodium for interstitial cystitis. The results found consistent exposure for the drug caused unique pigmentary maculopathy. This injury was most apparent in the layer of cells that nourishes the retina. 

Unfortunately, there is no telling how much of Elmiron results in levels of toxicity that damage the eye. Doctors recommend patients who show know toxicity symptoms be scanned for retina damage at least once a year. Further, patients who do show side effects should speak with their doctor about discontinuing the medication. 

Pigmentary Maculopathy

In particular, Elmiron is associated with pigmentary maculopathy. The central position of your eye’s retina macula. It is the portion of the eye that is highly sensitive and important for accurate vision. Maculopathy is just one of several disorders that can affect the macula. Maculopathy is more commonly known as macular degeneration. This condition is associated with the gradual loss of central vision. 

While macular degeneration is painless, it can affect both eyes or be present in just one. If the degeneration affects only one eye, the patient may not notice a significant loss of vision. In these cases, the other eye makes up for the vision loss. In a typical case, progression can occur rapidly or take several years. 


Photo courtesy of American Academy of Ophthalmology

Did Janssen Pharmaceuticals Hide the Dangers of Elmiron?

Lawsuits against the company allege that the company failed to properly warn physicians and the public that Elmiron could cause vision problems. Further, the lawsuits state that Janssen Pharmaceuticals actively hid side effects from the public.

I took Elmiron, what vision loss symptoms should I be aware of?

Elmiron vision loss symptoms vary, but the most common symptoms victims should be aware of include the following:

  • Difficulty reading
  • Eye pain
  • Blindness
  • Trouble seeing items near
  • Difficulty adapting to dim light
  • Vision disturbances

Has there been an Elmiron recall?

No. Despite the evidence, the FDA has not issued a recall for Elmiron. In fact, neither Janssen Pharmaceutical nor the FDA have alerted consumers to the potential for Elmiron causing vision loss.

Do I qualify for an Elmiron lawsuit?

The Carlson Law Firm is investigating Elmiron claims. If you suffered injuries associated with Elmiron use, consider contacting us for a free and confidential case evaluation. 

Injuries in the Elmiron lawsuits include the following: 

  • Total vision loss
  • Partial vision loss
  • Blurred vision
  • Reduced night vision
  • Pigmentary maculopathy
  • Degenerative maculopathy
  • Halo vision
  • Macular retinopathy
  • Macular/pattern dystrophy
  • Maculopathy
  • Metamorphopsia
  • Retinal pigment epithelium atrophy
  • Retinopathy
  • Scotoma
  • Unilateral or bilateral blindness
  • Vision impairment

It is important you contact a qualified Elmiron Lawsuit Attorney for a free case evaluation right away. The Carlson Law Firm is handling these cases nationwide and can take your call 24/7.

How can an Elmiron Lawsuit Lawyer help me?

The vision loss that Elmiron causes is permanent. If you or your loved one’s vision loss injuries are severe, your life will require significant changes including living aids and ongoing treatment. An Elmiron Lawsuit Lawyer from The Carlson Law Firm can help you recover:

  • Medical expenses
  • The cost of living aids
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Punitive damages against Janssen Pharmaceuticals

We are representing clients nationwide and are available to take your call 24/7. Contact an Elmiron Lawyer at 800-359-5690 or fill out a contact form to schedule your free case evaluation.

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