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Elmiron Lawsuit Updates – January 2023

2 min read

Elmiron, the brand name of Pentosan with the active ingredient sodium pentosan polysulfate (PPS), is a commonly used drug to treat interstitial cystitis, also known as “painful bladder syndrome.” Elmiron is manufactured by Johnson & Johnson and gained FDA approval in the mid-1990s. Since then, it has been prescribed by doctors and used by patients throughout the United States to treat IC. Several medical studies were published beginning in 2018 linking the use of Elmiron with vision problems, specifically pigmentary maculopathy. In fact, some studies conclude that 54% of patients who took Elmiron later developed eye disease. Several product liability lawsuits were filed beginning in June 2020, claiming that Janssen Pharmaceuticals (Johnson & Johnson’s parent company) knew about the risks of eye disease while taking Elmiron and failed to warn the public. Here are the latest updates about the current mass tort lawsuit against Elmiron.

Elmiron Availability

Elmiron is the only FDA-approved oral drug to treat patients with interstitial cystitis. The drug was approved by the FDA in 1996 and has been widely available for treatment since then. Elmiron packaging and labels did not include a warning about potential eye damage until June 2020. Due to this, many patients continued to take Elmiron even after developing symptoms of pigmentary maculopathy or other vision changes. In addition, the FDA has not recalled the drug, so patients may not understand the dangers of taking it. If caught early, it is possible to stop further eye damage if the patient stops taking Elmiron. However, the lack of warning labels caused thousands of patients to continue taking the medication even as their vision deteriorated. In addition, symptoms were sometimes written off as a sign of aging, so the connection between Elmiron and eye disease was not made.

Case Count Increase

Janssen Pharmaceuticals currently faces 1,784 cases against Elmiron in federal court as of October 2022. This number continues to grow as more people who suffered eye damage caused by Elmiron come forward and file suit against the company.

Multidistrict Litigation Trial Delayed

A Multidistrict Litigation case (MDL) was filed in December 2020 with District Judge Brian R. Martinotti of New Jersey presiding. During MDLs, cases with similar complaints and evidence are combined and appear before one federal court. The New Jersey MDL was the first scheduled trial to take place regarding Elmiron, with Maria Windham as the plaintiff. Windham is a woman from Louisiana who suffered eye damage about two years after taking Elmiron. This case was scheduled to begin in January 2023. However, Judge Martinotti postponed the trial start date to March 27, 2023. The outcome of this trial will set the stage for all other cases against Elmiron and could indicate the terms of a global settlement.

Compensation for Vision Problems Caused by Elmiron 

If you have experienced retinal maculopathy or other vision problems after being prescribed Elmiron, you may be eligible to file a suit against Janssen Pharmaceuticals and receive damages for your injuries and other expenses. Contact the Michael Brady Lynch Firm at 888-585-5907 for a free consultation. You pay nothing unless you are given compensation through a verdict or settlement. For more information about Elmiron and vision problems, click here.

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