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retinal diagnostics in ophthalmology

Four new Elmiron lawsuits have recently been filed in courts around the country. All of the plaintiffs claim that after using the interstitial cystitis (IC) medication, they suffered from vision damage and vision loss.

Wisconsin Woman Declared Legally Blind After Using Elmiron for 20 Years

The first plaintiff is from Wisconsin, and claims in her complaint that she was diagnosed with IC, a painful bladder condition, in 1998. Her doctor prescribed Elmiron (pentosan polysulfate sodium or PPS) shortly thereafter, and she took it for more than 20 years, from about 1998 through 2019.

During her last year on the drug, the plaintiff claims she started suffering from vision issues, including night vision problems, double vision, blurry vision, and dark spots. She was later diagnosed with retinal maculopathy, a progressive disease affecting the central part of the retina called the macula. she was declared legally blind in March 2020..

She blames Elmiron for her vision problems, stating that the manufacturers should have warned about the risks and alerted patients to the need to monitor for potential vision-related complications.

Kentucky Woman Diagnosed with Macular Degeneration After 17 Years on Elmiron

The second plaintiff is from Kentucky and claims she was also prescribed Elmiron to treat her IC. She took it for about 17 years. During that time she began to develop vision problems. She had difficulty doing things like reading print, newspapers, and books; writing; recognizing people, seeing steps or curbs; driving on bright sunny days, driving at night, and doing other normal activities like playing card games and tennis.

Her ophthalmologist later diagnosed her with macular degeneration, a degenerative disease affecting the macula. The plaintiff blames her vision problems on her long intake of Elmiron.

North Carolina Woman Diagnosed with Maculopathy After 17 Years on Elmiron

The third plaintiff is from North Carolina and states in her complaint that she was diagnosed with IC around 2003. Her doctor prescribed Elmiron, which she took as prescribed from 2003 to early 2020.

Around 2015, she started to suffer from vision problems including blurred vision, distorted vision, eye pain, difficulty reading, night vision problems, and difficulty adapting to darkness. In 2019, she was diagnosed with pentosan polysulfate maculopathy—the type of maculopathy that in studies, has been linked specifically with Elmiron use.

Ohio Woman Diagnosed with Maculopathy After Over 20 Years on Elmiron

The fourth plaintiff is from Ohio and states in her complaint that she was diagnosed with IC in 1996 and started taking Elmiron on the advice of her doctor. She took it as prescribed from 1996 to the present.

In 2017, she started to suffer from vision problems including night vision problems, eye pain, floaters, and distorted vision. In July 2020, she was diagnosed with pigmentary maculopathy, which she blames on her Elmiron use.

Between 2015 and 2018, the Emory Eye Center began observing a new eye disease in patients called retinal maculopathy, in which pigment cells within the eye’s retina change color and cause significant vision loss and eye dysfunction. This was a unique type of eye disease that didn’t resemble any other type of maculopathy.

Scientists explored the issue, and in 2018, published the first of several studies documenting a link between Elmiron use and this unique type of pigmentary retinal maculopathy. Elmiron manufacturers failed to change the product label to reflect this risk until June 2020.

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