Bellwether trials are scheduled to begin in May 2020 regarding accusations that PPI medications caused unexpected medical complications for users.
There are more than 4500 proton pump inhibitor (PPI) medication lawsuits in progress at the moment and include popular name brand drugs such as Nexium, Prilosec, Prevacid, and Protonix.
Attorneys representing users of these medications have been trying to negotiate a trial date since late 2017, but until recently, legal representatives for the drug companies have been reluctant to cooperate. It took nearly a year, but the sides finally came to an agreement on June 8th to move forward with bellwether trials.
These early trials tend to set the tone for future legal action and often provide a reason for one or both sides of a legal dispute to negotiate out-of-court settlements. It’s also possible that bellwether trials can lead to cases being dismissed.
There are currently more than 4500 PPI lawsuits pending in New Jersey’s federal court system that have been grouped into multidistrict litigation. That number is expected to grow in the coming months.
Risks of PPI Use
PPI medications are used to reduce stomach acid and help users manage ulcers and other medical conditions caused by excess acid production. These medications are extremely popular, despite the risks associated with them. Studies have shown that use of PPI drugs, especially long-term, can lead to serious kidney damage.
Many users have experienced long-term complications and have developed acute interstitial nephritis and kidney failure. Some cases proved fatal.
Medical studies have shown PPI users to be 50 percent more likely than those not using these drugs to develop chronic kidney disease. PPI use can also cause inflammation, which long-term, leads to permanent damage to the kidneys.
There is also evidence PPI use negatively affects magnesium levels, which can also impact kidney health.
PPI drugs put kidney health at risk and many users have needed dialysis and/or a kidney transplant surgery as a result of their PPI use.
PPI Manufacturers Failed to Warn of Risks
Plaintiffs is the PPI lawsuits claim drug makers were aware of the serious risks associated with their medications but failed to warn the public or the medical community. Had users of these medications understood the risk, they would have opted to use different medications that did not carry the same risk.