A PPI drug like Prilosec is often prescribed for patients who suffer from heartburn or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) and is available in both the prescription form or generic form called omeprazole. Some may be taking the over-the-counter version called Prilosec 24. These drugs have been on the market since 1988 and Procter and Gamble, and its partner AstraZeneca, are the manufacturers. Numerous studies published recently have shown Prilosec and other PPIs can have serious and potentially deadly side effects that patients may not be aware of including acute interstitial nephritis, chronic kidney disease (CKD), kidney failure, and death without kidney transplant surgery in some cases.
Prilosec Kidney Disease & Other Side Effects
The serious side effects of Prilosec were unknown for almost two decades, and there are millions of patients who are now at risk of becoming terminally ill for taking a drug for acid reflux. Most of these victims would never have taken them had they known they could become gravely ill or die from Prilosec.
Some patients who have suffered serious side effects have filed Prilosec lawsuits to help them minimize the financial impact of the more serious problems they have developed as a result of taking it. A Prilosec attorney may be able to hold the manufacturer responsible for the devastating consequences of taking the drug over a long period of time. They can discuss your circumstances and help you determine whether to participate in a class action Prilosec lawsuit or file a private suit. Families of victims who died from Prilosec may also be eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
Solving One Problem: Creating Another
GERD and other gastrointestinal problems are serious and can have a significant impact on your ability to eat without suffering extreme pain. Other symptoms of GERD include heartburn, severe pain, and nausea. In these instances, your physician may prescribe a PPI like Prilosec to help calm the side effects of heartburn and other gastrointestinal symptoms. Unfortunately we now know that Prilosec use can cause serious illnesses and even death.
If patients who took Prilosec had known that the risks of this acid reflux medication were death, kidney failure, and possible kidney transplant surgery they never would have risked taking it. This holds true for most physicians as well. Most reasonable doctors would not prescribe a drug for acid reflux if the known side effects included death and kidney failure. It would be like fighting fire with gasoline.
CKD and Kidney Failure from Prilosec
The Journal of the American Society of Nephrology published in April of 2016 reported a 96 percent increase in the risk of kidney failure and a 25 percent increased risk of kidney disease for people who used Prilosec for a long period of time. This means some patients are at risk for lifelong dialysis treatment because of kidney disease and in some cases, may require a kidney transplant. This is a devastating consequence of taking Prilosec and other proton pump inhibitors.
Symptoms of Kidney Damage & Disease
- Back Pain
- Frequent Urination
- Dark Urine
- Elevated Blood Pressure
People suffering from chronic kidney failure after taking Prilosec suffer a grim prognosis; although chronic kidney disease can be treated, eventually the kidneys will fail. Kidney failure is fatal unless doctors can find a donor match and successfully perform kidney transplant surgery.
Acute Interstitial Nephritis and Prilosec
The Pharmaceutical Journal published an article in 2013 indicating the use of omeprazole (generic Prilosec) as the cause of acute interstitial nephritis (AIN). However, the FDA did not officially add a warning about the dangers of developing AIN from Prilosec until 2015. Millions of Americans have taken Prilosec since it first came on the market in 1988, and thousands have died from acute interstitial nephritis without ever knowing that Prilosec was the cause of their illness.
Acute interstitial nephritis is a kidney disease characterized by inflammation of the soft tissues surrounding the kidney tubules. The inflammation inhibits normal kidney function, making it difficult and sometimes impossible to eliminate waste and toxins from the body. Severe cases of AIN can lead to kidney failure and death.
Now that the public knows that Prilosec causes acute interstitial nephritis, they can hold AstraZeneca responsible. Even if you lost a loved on a number of years ago to acute interstitial nephritis that you suspect was caused by Prilosec, you could still be eligible to file a lawsuit against PPI manufacturers.
Kidney Transplant Surgery from Prilosec
Patients who have acute interstitial nephritis and chronic kidney disease are at high risk for kidney failure. Unfortunately, kidney transplant surgery from Prilosec usage is now a reality. Kidney transplant surgery is the only possible cure for kidney failure, but it is not without risk.
In some cases, the recipient of a donor organ can suffer serious complications. Sometimes a patient’s body will reject the kidney transplant, leading to death.
Death from Prilosec Usage
If someone had said that Prilosec usage could lead to death 15 years ago, doctors and patients would not have prescribed this PPI drug so generously. Prilosec usage has been linked to death from kidney failure, chronic kidney disease, acute interstitial nephritis, and post-surgery death from pneumonia and clostridium difficile.
Patients are often given Prilosec after surgery to prevent acid reflux and gastric distress from lying down in a hospital bed. However, recent studies have shown that the administration of Prilosec and other PPI drugs after surgery can dramatically increase the patient’s mortality rate from pneumonia and dangerous bacterial infections of the intestines (clostridium difficile). According to the National Institute of Health, a Denmark study found that patients treated with PPI drugs post-surgery were 50% more likely to develop pneumonia than those who did not take them.
Another study reports that use of PPI drugs alongside antibiotics post-surgery can lead to death. This previously unknown but potentially deadly combination of drugs has been extremely common over the last few years, so many deaths may be attributed to it retrospectively.
If you think you are having a reaction to Prilosec, report it to your doctor immediately so that they can conduct a thorough examination.
Should You File a Prilosec Lawsuit?
Remember, pharmaceutical companies often mask the potentially deadly side effects of drugs in order to protect their bottom line. How long did they know the dangers of Prilosec before medical researchers uncovered the connection? If you or a loved one has suffered serious illness or death from Prilosec use, speak with an attorney to see if you are eligible to file a wrongful death, class action, or private lawsuit.
Pharmaceutical companies should be held accountable for all of the pain, suffering, medical bills, and loss of life that they caused by not disclosing potentially fatal side effects. We can answer any questions you have and help you determine whether filing a lawsuit against Prilosec manufacturers could be fruitful.
Contact a Prilosec Attorney Today
The Prilosec lawyers at Baron & Budd will review your case and help determine if filing a lawsuit is a good option in your case. Call our law firm at 877-629-0481 or complete our contact form and we will be in touch to discuss a potential Prilosec lawsuit. If we take your case, rest assured that we will fight hard to get you all of the money you deserve.