Prevacid (lansoprazole) is a proton-pump inhibitor (PPI) antacid medication that is used to prevent heartburn and acid reflux disease. It has been linked to several kidney diseases that can cause kidney failure, including:
- Interstitial nephritis
- Kidney inflammation
- Acute kidney injury
- Chronic kidney disease
PPI and Side Effects
A growing number of studies have found that people who use PPIs are more likely to develop kidney side effects. The first case reports linking Prevacid and nephritis (kidney inflammation) were published over a decade ago, but warnings were not added to the label until December 2014.
A study published in CMAJ Open found that PPIs tripled the risk of nephritis and more than doubled the risk of kidney damage. Another study published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology found patients who use Prevacid and other PPI medications may be 96% more likely to develop kidney failure. According to the author of the study, Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly:
“I think people see these medications at the drug store and assume they’re completely safe. But there’s growing evidence they’re not as safe as we’ve thought. [Patients should] use PPIs only when it is medically necessary, and should limit duration of exposure to the minimum necessary to treat the underlying medical condition.”
What is Kidney Failure?
Kidney failure occurs when the kidneys stop performing functions essential to survival, such as cleaning the blood and removing excess fluids and wastes in urine. Kidney disease causes symptoms in many areas of the body, such as:
- Fluid retention (swelling in legs and feet)
- Chronic fatigue and weakness
- High blood pressure
- Loss of appetite and weight-loss
- Nausea and vomiting
- Dry skin and persistent itching
- Weak bones
- Anemia (low blood count)
- Chest pain or pressure
- Muscle cramps
- Confusion or cognitive problems
Diagnosis & Treatment for Kidney Failure
A blood test that finds abnormally high levels of creatinine and blood-urea nitrogen (BUN) and low glomerular filtration rate (GFR) is used to diagnose kidney failure.
Once kidney failure is diagnosed, the first step is discontinuing medications that are harming the kidneys. Prevacid patients may need to take a non-PPI heartburn medication. They may also need to use medications that lower blood pressure. Failing kidneys can sometimes recover, but when they stop working, the only treatments are dialysis or a kidney transplant.
Contact an Experienced Prevacid Injury Attorney
If you have been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease after using Prevacid or another proton pump inhibitor medication, it is important to speak to a skilled Prevacid injury attorney as soon as possible. Patients who were harmed by proton pump inhibitor medication can file a lawsuit in civil court against the drug manufacturer to obtain compensation for their damages and losses including medical bills and lost income. At Michigan Injury Lawyers, our caring and experienced defective drug lawyers are here to help. Contact us today at 313-GET-HELP to speak to our skilled Prevacid injury attorneys.