Elmiron is a medication prescribed to treat the pain and discomfort of interstitial cystitis (IC), a chronic bladder condition. Manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, the medication has been linked to serious eye injuries, including blurred vision, eye pain, and vision loss. On June 16, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning label that Elmiron may damage the retina, the light-sensing tissue at the back of the eye that allows us to see.
If you took Elmiron to treat the symptoms of IC as prescribed by a licensed healthcare provider and developed retina damage, you may be eligible for compensation. An Elmiron mass tort lawyer can provide legal assistance and help you pursue financial recovery.
The Law Offices of Michael J. Gopin, PLLC has helped many people who suffered physical and emotional pain and other consequences due to defective or dangerous products. You deserve to understand your legal options regarding potential compensation. Contact us for a free case review.
What Is Elmiron?
Elmiron is the brand name for prescription medication with the active ingredient pentosan polysulfate sodium (PPS). It is primarily used to treat interstitial cystitis. According to the Mayo Clinic, IC is a chronic bladder condition characterized by pelvic pain, urinary urgency, and increased frequency of urination.
Elmiron forms a protective coating on the bladder wall, which may help alleviate pain and discomfort. Elmiron is usually taken orally in capsules. The dosage and duration of treatment may vary depending on the severity of the condition and the individual patient’s response to the medication. The FDA approved Elmiron as a treatment for IC in 1996.
Elmiron and Retina Damage
Extended use of Elmiron has been linked to an increased risk of developing retinal pigmentary changes, resulting in visual disturbances and potentially irreversible vision loss. These changes may lead to pigmentary maculopathy. Symptoms of pigmentary maculopathy include blurred or distorted vision, difficulty reading, and changes in color perception. Patients with retina damage are also more likely to develop macular degeneration. Macular degeneration creates significant central vision loss and is irreversible.
Two significant research studies support a connection between Elmiron and retina damage.
A 2018 report published by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) indicated that patients who took Elmiron for several years seemed more likely to develop pigmentary maculopathy. It is believed that Elmiron may accumulate in the retina over time, leading to cellular damage, which could potentially result in vision changes.
A similar report from AAO summarized by Science Daily in 2019 supported the initial findings that long-term use of Elmiron could lead to “vision-threatening” eye conditions, including macular degeneration characterized by blurred or distorted vision.
Patients who take Elmiron may experience the following symptoms associated with retina damage including:
- Eye pain
- Difficulty adjusting to changes in light and dark
- Blurred or distorted vision
- Dark spots that block vision
- Changes in eye color
- Difficulty seeing colors
- Straight lines appear curvy
- Blind spots in one or both eyes
- Vision loss
Elmiron may lead to other harmful side effects in addition to retina damage.
Other Harmful Side Effects from Elmiron
According to a medical research study published in the National Library of Medicine, regular use of Elmiron has been linked to the following conditions:
- Liver and Kidney Toxicity – Elmiron has been associated with rare liver and kidney toxicity cases. Some patients may experience elevated liver enzyme levels, indicating liver damage. In severe cases, Elmiron can cause liver failure.
- Allergic Reactions – Elmiron can potentially cause allergic reactions ranging from mild to severe. Symptoms may include rash, itching, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat, and difficulty breathing. Some patients could develop anaphylaxis, a life-threatening allergic reaction that can cause breathing problems, low blood pressure, and severe swelling.
- Gastrointestinal (GI) Issues – Some patients may experience gastrointestinal side effects from Elmiron, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or abdominal pain. These symptoms are usually mild and temporary, but in some cases, they may be severe and require medical attention.
- Bleeding Risk – Elmiron has been reported to cause an increased risk of bleeding in some patients, especially those with a history of bleeding disorders or taking other medications that increase bleeding risk. Symptoms of bleeding include easy bruising, nosebleeds, bleeding gums, blood in urine or stools, or prolonged bleeding after cuts or injuries.
Details About Elmiron Lawsuits
Elmiron lawsuits allege that Janssen Pharmaceuticals failed to adequately warn patients and healthcare providers about potential retina damage and other side effects.
If you believe that you have been harmed by Elmiron, it’s essential to seek legal advice from a qualified attorney who is familiar with pharmaceutical litigation. An Elmiron attorney can provide information about your legal rights, options, and potential compensation, based on your specific circumstances.
An El Paso injury attorney may help you pursue the compensation you deserve for Elmiron damages. The term “damages” refers to compensation for the physical, emotional, and financial harm you suffered due to the company’s failure to warn you about the risks to your eye health, vision, and general health.
Who Is Eligible to File an Elmiron Lawsuit?
If you experienced adverse changes to your vision after taking Elmiron for an extended time, you might qualify to file an Elmiron lawsuit if you meet the following requirements:
You used Elmiron as prescribed by a healthcare provider for at least two years
- You experienced complications or symptoms of retina damage
- You sought medical treatment for vision issues or vision loss and were diagnosed with pigmentary maculopathy, retinal maculopathy, or macular degeneration while taking Elmiron or within one year of discontinuing use
An Elmiron attorney can determine if you can file an Elmiron lawsuit.
How Michael Gopin Can Help
You must take many steps in a mass tort lawsuit to pursue your right to compensation. Janssen Pharmaceuticals has a legal team that aims to discredit injury victims and prevent them from obtaining full and fair compensation. An Elmiron lawsuit attorney with the Law Offices of Michael J. Gopin, PLLC can help you in many ways, including:
- Determining a causal link between Elmiron and your medical injuries
- Uncovering information about what the manufacturer knew when marketing its products to the public
- Calculating a value to your physical, emotional, and financial losses
- Protecting your legal rights
- Negotiating a fair and just settlement
- Representing you in court if you cannot reach a settlement
Pursuing compensation in a lawsuit involving medical and legal issues is challenging. Our El Paso personal injury lawyers have the knowledge and resources to build a claim on your behalf. You deserve a responsive and compassionate legal team to help you while you focus on your health.
The Law Offices of Michael J. Gopin, PLLC can help you pursue Elmiron damages caused by a pharmaceutical giant that failed to warn you about the harmful side effects of its product. We have over 35 years of combined legal experience to help you seek fair compensation for your injuries. Contact us for a free case consultation.