August 6, 2014 — A lawsuit has been filed by a woman who took Benicar (olmesartan) and endured more than three years of intestinal side effects.
The plaintiff, Bernadette Bujol-Brown, is a 63 year-old resident of Louisiana who used Benicar HCT between May 2006 and August 2013. In the spring of 2010, she started experiencing various gastrointestinal symptoms, including abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
After visiting her doctor, she was referred to a hospital for surgery. In an endoscopy on April 9, 2010, doctors found numerous lesions and active bleeding in her intestines. She had another endoscopy on April 23, 2010, to treat her intestinal problems. In November 2013, she had a third endoscopy, which resulted in the removal of hematin existing throughout her stomach.
Bujol-Brown’s doctor mailed her information about this side effect on August 2, 2013. When she stopped taking Benicar, her symptoms resolved. Now she is seeking compensation and punitive damages for her severe, permanent injuries, including substantial pain and suffering, medical expenses, economic losses, and more.
In July 2013, the FDA warned that Benicar can cause intestinal problems known as sprue-like enteropathy. The FDA updated the label to warn that sprue-like enteropathy may cause severe, chronic diarrhea and weight-loss. These symptoms may develop months or years after starting Benicar, and sometimes require hospitalization. Other blood pressure drugs in the same class as Benicar have not been linked to enteropathy.
The lawsuit was filed against Daiichi Sankyo, the Japanese manufacturer of Benicar, on August 1 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. Many similar lawsuits accuse the drug-maker selling a “defective and unreasonably dangerous pharmaceutical blood pressure drug,” failing to warn about severe side effects, and failing to properly test Benicar before marketing it as safe and effective.
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