The federal court overseeing hundreds of kidney injury lawsuits involving Nexium and other proton pump inhibitors convened its most recent Status Conference on October 11, 2017.
According to a Joint Status Report prepared by the parties ahead of the conference, there are currently 275 proton pump inhibitor lawsuits involving 285 plaintiffs pending in the multidistrict litigation now underway in the U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey.
Around 130 potentially related actions have been filed in Delaware Superior Court, New Castle County.
A single state court action involving 28 plaintiffs is pending in the Missouri Circuit Court, 22nd Judicial Circuit (City of St. Louis). An individual case involving a single plaintiff has been filed in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas in Pennsylvania, while another involving a single plaintiff has been filed in 12th Judicial District Court, Avoyelles Parish, Louisiana.
Proton pump inhibitors like Nexium, Prilosec and PrevAcid are indicated to treat GERD and other disorders related to the overproduction of stomach acid. Millions rely on these medications, and because they have become so ubiquitous, few patients ever consider their potential side effects. As a result, many people take proton pump inhibitors for far longer than recommended.
In 2014, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) ordered proton pump inhibitor manufacturers to update their labels to include acute interstitial nephritis, a sudden inflammation of the kidney tubules, as a potential side effect. If not recognized and treated immediately, this condition can progress to chronic kidney disease and even kidney failure.
Proton pump inhibitor labels list no other potential kidney side effects. In April 2016, however, the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology published a study which linked long-term proton pump inhibitor use to a 96% increase in the risk for kidney failure and 28% higher risk for chronic kidney disease compared another class of heartburn medications called H2-blockers.
Research published in the January 2016 issue JAMA Internal Medicine suggested that long-term proton pump inhibitor treatment increased the risk of chronic kidney disease by as much as 50%.
Since these studies were published, an increasing number of plaintiffs have filed suit against the maker of Nexium, Prilosec, PrevAcid, Dexilant and Protonix. The drug companies are accused of concealing the risks associated with their products and failing to provide doctors and patients with adequate safety warnings.