Zegerid Kidney Injury Lawsuits: PPI Heartburn Drugs May Cause Renal Failure

Zegerid Kidney Injury Lawsuits: PPI Heartburn Drugs May Cause Renal Failure 2018-03-07T09:51:26+00:00
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Zegerid is an effective heartburn drug, but long-term use may come with severe risks:

  • Chronic Kidney Disease
  • Kidney Failure
  • Acute Interstitial Nephritis

Lawsuits are now being filed for financial compensation. To learn more about your legal options, contact our attorneys today.

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Zegerid is an effective heartburn drug, but long-term use may come with severe risks:

  • Chronic Kidney Disease
  • Kidney Failure
  • Acute Interstitial Nephritis

Lawsuits are now being filed for financial compensation. To learn more about your legal options, contact our attorneys today.

24/7 Free PPI Consultations

(866) 807-4631

Our attorneys have the experience and talent to pursue PPI lawsuits vigorously.

— Laurence Rosen, Esq.


"Invaluable."
Laurence's wealth of knowledge is a huge asset.

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Proton pump inhibitors, a class of drugs used to treat heartburn-related disorders, have been associated with severe forms of kidney damage, including end-stage renal disease, or kidney failure. Over 600 injured patients have already filed product liability lawsuits over the risk, claiming pharmaceutical manufacturers concealed the damage in order to secure higher profits.

How Zegerid Works To Reduce Stomach Acid

Zegerid is a proton pump inhibitor drug approved for the treatment of intestinal disorders caused or exacerbated by excessive gastric acid production.

Doctors Making Incision

Like other drugs in the PPI class, Zegerid reduces the amount of stomach acid secreted by your stomach, helping to alleviate many of the symptoms involved in conditions like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), gastrointestinal ulcers and erosive esophagitis.

A Combination Drug

In contrast to leading PPI drugs, like Prevacid and Nexium, Zegerid is a combination medication. Each pill combines a dose of omeprazole, the same proton pump inhibitor found in Prilosec, with sodium bicarbonate, an antacid that most of us know as baking soda. Baking soda is added to protect the omeprazole from being consumed by stomach acid, allowing the proton pump inhibitor to do its work.

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Zegerid is available both as a prescription and over-the-counter, though the OTC version includes a lower dosage of omeprazole.

PPI Drugs: Appropriate Only For Short-Term Use

Importantly, Zegerid is only indicated for the short-term treatment of gastric acid-related disorders. The long-term effects of Zegerid, as with other proton pump inhibitors, include a number of serious medical complications.

Researchers have linked extended treatment periods with an increased risk for osteoporosis, bacterial infections and hypomagnesemia, a form of vitamin deficiency. The drug’s warning label currently bears prominent warnings against all of these risks, allowing doctors and patients to make informed prescribing decisions.

Potential Risks To Kidney Health Concern Researchers

But a growing number of patients believe that Zegerid’s manufacturer, along with other proton pump inhibitor companies, haven’t been forthcoming about the risks that these drugs pose to kidney health.

Take a quick look at Zegerid’s warning label and you’ll find a clear warning about acute interstitial nephritis (AIN), a type of allergic reaction, usually caused by pharmaceuticals, that affects portions of the kidney.

Zegerid: Known Cause Of Acute Interstitial Nephritis

“Acute interstitial nephritis has been observed in patients taking PPIs including Zegerid,” the label reads. “Acute interstitial nephritis may occur at any point during PPI therapy and is generally attributed to an idiopathic hypersensitivity reaction. Discontinue Zegerid if acute interstitial nephritis develops.”

That sounds pretty clear. Zegerid has been linked to sudden allergic reactions in the kidney. It can happen anytime and, if it happens to your patient, get them off Zegerid immediately. All of that is true, to the best of our current medical understanding.

Over the last decade, a number of case reports have published details of AIN cases that were clearly linked to a new proton pump inhibitor prescription, including cases in which the symptoms disappeared after the patient was taken off the drug.

Kidney Risks Go Far Deeper, Patients Claim

But acute interstitial nephritis doesn’t occur in a vacuum. Today, doctors understand that AIN often triggers more complex and long-lasting kidney problems. One such condition is acute kidney injury, a sudden-onset form of kidney failure, in which the kidneys lose their ability to process waste in the blood.

“Acute interstitial nephritis (AIN) is an under-recognized and under-diagnosed cause of acute kidney injury,” according to researchers in Clinical Nephrology. True to form, proton pump inhibitors have been linked to an increased risk for acute kidney injury.

Acute Kidney Injuries

Evidence of this association has been mounting since at least 2002. And a large meta-analysis of relevant research, conducted by Chinese nephrologists in 2017, found that combining the data from multiple studies uncovered a 61% increase in the risk for acute kidney injury (AKI) among PPI patients.

Chronic Kidney Disease: Key Contributor To End-Stage Renal Disease

Growing worries also forced researchers to expand their investigation into other forms of kidney damage. Alongside acute kidney injuries, which are a form of kidney failure, proton pump inhibitors like Zegerid have also been associated with chronic kidney disease.

In a study of nearly 10,500 patients, a group of epidemiologists from Johns Hopkins and Yale Universities found that PPI patients were between 20% and 50% more likely to develop chronic kidney disease than people who had never taken the drugs, and over 70% more likely to suffer acute kidney injuries. The study was published by the Journal of the American Medical Association, America’s most prestigious medical journal.

Lawsuits: Drug Companies Failed To Warn Of PPI Risks

Despite this growing understanding, you won’t see any references to acute kidney injury, chronic kidney disease or kidney failure on Zegerid’s warning label. Nor will you find the terms mentioned in the warning labels for Prilosec, Nexium or Prevacid. That’s a big problem, according to hundreds of patients who suffered kidney failure after being prescribed a proton pump inhibitor.

As of February 2018, nearly 700 people have filed federal lawsuits over kidney injuries they say were caused by PPI drugs. Consolidated as a Multi-District Litigation in a New Jersey federal court, the claims are currently working through pre-trial proceedings as a group.

Putting The Pieces Together

Their argument is remarkably simple.

Drug companies have known for years that PPI medications can cause interstitial nephritis, the lawsuits note, referencing the allergic reaction we discussed earlier. And doctors have long-recognized that allergic kidney reactions are a leading contributor to acute kidney injuries. Acute kidney injuries, in turn, are a leading contributor to chronic kidney disease. Now, we have growing medical evidence that proton pump inhibitors may increase the risk for all of these renal conditions.

Can You File A Zegerid Lawsuit?

Yet patients and medical providers are only being warned about one of the disorders, acute interstitial nephritis. Where did all of the other warnings go? Why haven’t we been warned about the links to acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease?

The only plausible answer, plaintiffs argue, is that the drug companies saw a major profit opportunity, one that would have been dashed if the alleged long-term risks of their products were widely-publicized.

Secure Your Free Legal Consultation

Were you or a loved one diagnosed with kidney failure after taking Zegerid? Contact our dedicated PPI attorneys today to learn more about your legal options. You may be eligible to pursue a product liability lawsuit and secure financial compensation, including damages to cover your past and future medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.

To find out more about eligibility requirements and your legal rights, call our lawyers now for a free consultation.

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