Denver & Colorado Omeprazole Proton Pump Inhibitor Lawsuit Attorney
Millions of people take medication for heartburn and acid reflux. But the regular use of the acid-reducing medications known as proton pump inhibitors is associated with dangerous side effects in some users, studies suggest. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease or kidney failure after regular use of the medication Prilosec (omeprazole) or other heartburn medication, you may be entitled to seek compensation.
The dangerous medications lawyers at The Sawaya Law Firm are currently evaluating cases of kidney damage and disease and bone fractures linked to regular use of prescription Prilosec or over-the-counter Prilosec. Attorney Michael Sawaya and the legal team at The Sawaya Law Firm are dedicated to helping individuals harmed by unsafe prescription medications. Our 40-year record of advocacy on behalf of injury victims in Colorado and the 12 core values on which The Sawaya Law Firm was founded have helped us establish a heritage of justice for our clients. Many of our attorneys including our founding attorney have been recognized by Colorado Super Lawyers®. Our Prilosec lawsuit attorneys at the Sawaya Law Firm serve clients in Denver, Greeley and throughout Northeastern Colorado. Contact us for a free evaluation of your case. You may be eligible to pursue compensation to pay your medical bills and lost income through an omeprazole injury lawsuit against the Prilosec drug manufacturer.
What Are Proton Pump Inhibitors?
Proton pump inhibitors are a prominent class of medications taken by mouth designed to reduce production of stomach acid. They work by turning off the glands that pump acid into the stomach. There are numerous brands of proton pump inhibitors. Some are sold as over-the-counter heartburn medications and some require a prescription from a doctor.
The first proton pump inhibitor approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Prilosec, which contains the active ingredient omeprazole, is available both over the counter and in stronger dosages by prescription. Prilosec and Prilosec OTC are registered trademarks of the drug manufacturer AstraZeneca.
When Are PPIs Used?
Proton pump inhibitors are used to treat various gastrointestinal disorders including heartburn, peptic ulcers, symptoms of acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or damage caused by acid reflux. PPIs promote the healing of stomach ulcers.
Proton pump inhibitors are among the most commonly prescribed medications in the U.S. Millions of Americans take proton pump inhibitors such as Prilosec, Nexium and Prevacid as heartburn medication.
Proton Pump Inhibitor Side Effects
PPIs cause a number of side effects. A number of recent medical studies have raised red flags about potentially serious side effects related to long-term use of the drugs. Among the serious PPI side effects are:
- Increased risk of bone fractures of the hip, wrist and spine;
- Increased risk of community-acquired pneumonia and Clostridium difficile or C. diff infections, which causes diarrhea;
- Reduced magnesium levels in the body, which can cause kidney damage, neurological effects and muscular effects including seizures and effects on the heart;
- Adverse interaction with some other drugs including anti-seizure medicines and blood thinners such as warfarin or Plavix;
- Possible increased risk of dementia among elderly patients.
How Do PPIs Cause Kidney Damage/Kidney Disease?
People who take proton pump inhibitors such as Prilosec have a 20 percent to 50 percent higher risk of chronic kidney disease compared to non-users, according to a 2016 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Internal Medicine. Medical researchers who did the study examined the medical records of more than 10,000 people.
Chronic kidney disease, in which the kidneys lose their ability to filter blood properly, can progress to end stage renal disease and kidney failure and require kidney dialysis or kidney transplant, according to the National Institutes of Health. Chronic kidney disease is linked to a substantially increased risk of heart attack and death.
The short-term use of PPIs such as omeprazole increases the risk of acute kidney injury (AKI), acute interstitial nephritis, chronic kidney disease, according to a 2017 study published in the medical journal Kidney International. If a patient has repeated bouts of acute kidney inflammation, the kidneys may become damaged over time.
What Are Signs of Chronic Kidney Disease?
The symptoms of chronic kidney disease may develop gradually as the kidney damage progresses. The signs of CKD may include:
- Changes in urination
- Reduced urine flow
- Appetite loss
- Fluid retention
- Muscle twitches and cramps
- Swelling of feet and ankles
- Sleep problems
- Decreased mental alertness
- High blood pressure.
If you are taking Prilosec and experience these symptoms, you should report the symptoms to your doctor promptly.
How Do PPIs Lead to Broken Bones?
In 2010, the FDA announced that it was adding a warning to the labels of prescription-strength proton pump inhibitors regarding the possible increased risk of fractures of the hip, wrist and spine. The safety alert was based on FDA researchers review of several studies that indicated an increased risk of bone fractures. Some studies suggested that patients taking high doses of PPIs daily for 12 months or longer are at the greatest risk of broken bones.
The long-term use of PPIs may cause a decreased intestinal absorption of calcium and other vitamins and minerals, causing increased loss of bone density and bone fractures.
Who Is Eligible to File a Prilosec Lawsuit?
You may be entitled to file a lawsuit against the maker of Prilosec if you have been taking Prilosec (omeprazole) regularly for an extended period of time and since then been diagnosed with kidney injury, chronic kidney disease, renal failure or bone fractures. You may have been harmed by a dangerous medicine and have a right to sue the drug manufacturer.
The family of an individual who died of kidney failure or other complications while taking Prilosec may be entitled to bring a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of their loved one.
Drug makers have a legal duty to make and market products that are safe and effective when used as directed, and to warn of known hazards. If the risks of long-term use of taking omeprazole had been known, patients may have been prescribed other medications to treat their condition.
An increasing number of proton pump inhibitor lawsuits are being filed against the drug makers. The lawsuits allege that the manufacturer of omeprazole and other PPIs have failed to provide important safety information regarding serious complications such as chronic kidney disease and kidney failure.
Contact Colorado & Denver Omeprazole Proton Pump Inhibitor Lawsuit Lawyer
Call us today at 720-709-2855 for a free consultation with an omeprazole proton pump inhibitor lawsuit lawyer.