Benicar $300M Settlement over side effects. Daiichi Sankyo and Forest Laboratories the makers of the blockbuster blood pressure pills have agreed to settle product liability and personal injury claims for severe side effects from the medications.
Benicar Diarrhea Side Effects Lawsuits
The companies will pay $300 million in compensation to patients who developed chronic diarrhea, severe weight loss, and other gastrointestinal injuries after using Benicar, Azor or Tribenzor.
The over 2,000 lawsuits claim that the companies failed to warn about significant side effects linked to the olmesartan-based drugs.
Benicar Federal Multidistrict Litigation
All federal litigation over the personal injury claims over Benicar has been centralized before U.S. District Judge Robert Kugler in the District of New Jersey, as part of an MDL or multidistrict litigation.
Judge Kugler announced that the parties have reached a Master Settlement Agreement to settle claims for injuries that occurred from the use of Benicar, Benicar HCT, Azor or Tribenzor before May 2015.
Benicar Settlement Details
The final $300 million settlement details are available at the Olmesartan Products Resolution Program website. Judge Kugler has ordered that a census of all claims be filed by August 25, including both filed and unfiled cases. For injured patients who have not yet filed a lawsuit, they must have an executed retainer agreement signed with a lawyer by August 23 to be eligible for the settlement.
Benicar Gastrointestinal Injuries
The gastrointestinal injuries from Benicar (olmesartan) may occur months, or even years, after first use of the drug. Many doctors did not take their patients off of the drug when symptoms appeared, increasing the risk of permanent intestinal damage, known as villous atrophy.
The Benicar litigation intensified after the FDA required the drug makers to update the warnings in July 2013, indicating for the first time that the there was clear evidence the drug may cause severe diarrhea problems.
FDA Benicar Sprue-Like Enteropathy Warning
In July 2013, the FDA issued a drug safety communication informing about the association between Benicar and sprue-like enteropathy, an intestinal disease complex associated with chronic diarrhea, weight gain and malnutrition.
According to the FDA warning, the vast majority of cases, diarrhea and intestinal symptoms usually stop when the medication is discontinued. But in serious cases, many patients have reported suffering extended periods of diarrhea that damage the intestines.
Mayo Medical Study
In 2012, a Mayo Clinic medical study, reported 22 cases of Benicar patients suffering symptoms similar to Celiac disease. Celiac disease is a severe small intestinal disease. This Mayo study was the first to raise public awareness of the potential side effects associated with Benicar.
What is Benicar?
Benicar is a popular angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) medication, approved for the treatment of high blood pressure. There were an estimated 10.6 million prescriptions for Benicar or Benicar HCT in 2012.
Shezad Malik is an Internal Medicine and Cardiology specialist, a Texas Medical Doctor (retired) and Defective Medical Device and Dangerous Drug Attorney. Dr. Shezad Malik Law Firm has offices based in Fort Worth and Dallas and represents people who have suffered catastrophic and serious personal injuries including wrongful death, caused by the negligence or recklessness of others.