Thousands of Nexium lawsuits and other proton pump inhibitor injury claims continue to move forward in a multidistrict litigation currently underway in the U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey.
According to court documents, the litigation convened its most recent Status Conference on January 22nd. During the conference, the parties provided the Court with updates regarding filings, as well as the status of depositions, discovery, and Plaintiffs’ Profile Forms.
Among other things, the Court noted that it had received the parties’ briefs on a pending Motion to Compel Production of Foreign Documents. Evidently, a decision on the Motion will be issued soon.
The Court also directed Defendants’ Counsel to produce a Final Privilege Log by February 1st. Once it is produced, the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee will have until February 8th to meet and confer with Defendants regarding any challenges to the log.
There are nearly 2,800 proton pump inhibitor injury claims pending in New Jersey. Along with Nexium lawsuits, plaintiffs have also filed cases against the manufacturers of Prilosec, PrevAcid, Protonix, and Dexilant.
Most of the complaints put forth similar allegations regarding a link between long-term proton pump inhibitor use and serious kidney complications, including:
However, a growing number of filings also assert that Nexium or similar heartburn drugs caused gastric cancer.
The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation established the centralized proton pump inhibitor litigation in August 2017. At the time, fewer than 200 cases were pending in federal courts throughout the United States.
The multidistrict litigation process allows lawsuits of a similar nature to undergo coordinated discovery and other pretrial proceedings. This eliminates duplicative discovery and inconsistent court rulings, promotes judicial efficiency, and preserves the resources of the courts, parties, and witnesses involved in the litigation.
Proton pump inhibitors like Nexium treat GERD and other heartburn symptoms caused by excess stomach acid. By some estimates, more than 13 million Americans take prescription proton pump inhibitors every year. It’s likely that even more turn to Nexium 24HR and other over-the-counter versions.
Proton pump inhibitors are only intended for short-term use. However, some research indicates that many people take the drugs far longer than recommended. All too often, these patients are also using the drugs for inappropriate indications.
Unfortunately, the overuse of proton pump inhibitors could have serious public health consequences. In fact, recent studies have linked extended treatment to a range of serious side effects, including an increased risk of kidney problems, heart attacks and strokes, dementia, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, gastric cancer, and certain fractures.
Plaintiffs pursuing Nexium lawsuits assert that proton pump inhibitor manufacturers were aware of the drugs’ potential to harm the kidneys or cause gastric cancer. Yet rather than warn the public, they continued to promote the drugs as safe and effective remedies for heartburn.