• Patients Charge Blood Pressure Medication Benicar is a Dangerous and Defective Drug
  • March 23, 2015 | Author: Lexi J. Hazam
  • Law Firm: Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein, LLP - San Francisco Office
  • Attorney Lexi Hazam of the national plaintiffs’ law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, announced that two patients prescribed olmesartan medoxomil, a widely-prescribed medication sold under the brand name Benicar, today filed a personal injury lawsuit alleging that Benicar is a dangerous and defective drug. The complaint, filed in federal court in San Francisco, names as defendants Japanese-based Daiichi Sankyo, Benicar’s manufacturer, and Forest Laboratories, which marketed Benicar in the U.S. Steven W. Teppler of the Abbott Law Group, P.A. from Jacksonville, Florida, also serves as counsel for plaintiffs.

    While taking the recommended dosage of Benicar, the plaintiffs developed severe gastrointestinal injuries, including sprue-like enteropathy and villous atrophy. As a result, both plaintiffs were hospitalized due to severe and chronic diarrhea, substantial weight loss, and other major complications.

    “I suffered from chronic diarrhea and major complications from Benicar, causing me to be hospitalized and experienced substantial weight loss,” stated plaintiff Michael Ewald of Bakersfield, California. “My condition was misdiagnosed and the treatments I initially received were ineffective until I was properly diagnosed. I hope that my lawsuit raises the awareness of dangers of Benicar. No one should experience what I have experienced.”

    According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, over ten million Benicar prescriptions were made to approximately two million patients in the U.S. in 2012. The complaint charges that Daiichi Sankyo and Forest Laboratories marketed Benicar and their other olmesartan products of Benicar HT, Tribenzor, and Azor to physicians and consumers claiming the medications were superior, more effective, and safer than other antihypertensive drug products available.

    The complaint alleges that Benicar was insufficiently tested and not accompanied by adequate instructions and warnings to apprise consumers of the full risks and side effects associated with its use. “Daiichi Sankyo and Forest Laboratories, as alleged in the complaint, were aware that long-term use of Benicar was linked to a host of serious and, in some cases, life-threatening diseases, yet failed to adequately warn physicians and consumers of these risks,” stated Lexi Hazam.

    Patients taking Benicar have experienced:
    • severe, chronic diarrhea with substantial weight loss;
    • severe gastrointestinal problems;
    • sprue-like enteropathy; and
    • villous atrophy.
    Sprue-like entrophy and villous atrophy are both conditions involving destruction of the intestinal lining that are characterized by severe, chronic diarrhea, malabsorption, and substantial weight loss. These conditions often result in repeat hospitalizations, and in some cases cause secondary complications such as renal failure. The conditions can develop months to years after starting Benicar use.

    The case is entitled Verduzco v. Daiichi Sankyo, Inc., Case No. 3:15-cv-159. Ms. Hazam is licensed to practice law in California. Mr. Teppler is licensed to practice law in Florida, New York, Illinois, and the District of Columbia.