What is a Proton Pump Inhibitor?
Proton pump inhibitor drugs are used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly referred to as acid reflux. These drugs work by reducing the amount of acid in a person’s stomach. They are also sometimes prescribed to treat stomach infections, reduce stomach ulcers and to heal acid-related damage to the lining of the stomach and throat. There are a number different proton pump inhibitors on the market today.
Two such drugs are Nexium (Esomeprazole) and Prilosec (Omeprazole). There are close to 15 million Americans that use proton pump inhibitors. However, research published in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggests that close to 25% of the 15 million proton pump inhibitor users could stop taking the medication without suffering increased acid reflux or heartburn.
Proton Pump Inhibitor Side Effects
The use of proton pump inhibitors is not without side effects, the most serious of which include:
- Bone Fractures
- Kidney disease
- Renal failure
- Heart damage
There are additional side effects for users who take multiple doses a day for long periods of time (more than a year), particularly for those over the age of 50. These users face an increased risk for fractures of the hip, spine, and wrist. Furthermore, users may have a 20-50% higher chance of suffering chronic kidney disease compared to nonusers, as well as a 20-30% higher risk of stroke.
Nexium & Prilosec Lawsuits
There are currently hundreds of lawsuits being filed against the manufacturers of Nexium and Prilosec claiming they failed to warn patients and physicians of the elevated risks of ischemic stroke and kidney damage. Attorneys for the plaintiffs argue that patients would have chosen different medication options if the appropriate warnings were provided. They also claim that with proper warnings and instructions doctors would have monitored the kidney function of their patients more closely while they were taking the medication.
If you or someone you know is/has been a long-term user of Nexium or Prilosec, learn what your legal options might be. Call today to speak with a Nexium and Prilosec lawyer that can evaluate your individual claim. Martin, Harding and Mazzotti LLP is here to help. Click the “Live Chat Now” button to the left or call us anytime, 24/7 at 1800LAW1010 (1.800.529.1010).