A growing number of Ditropan XL lawsuits have been filed by people who developed dementia after taking this medication for overactive bladder symptoms.
Need a Texas Ditropan XL Lawyer? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged. If you were diagnosed with dementia after taking Ditropan XL, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit.
What is Ditropan XL?
Ditropan XL® (generic: oxybutynin) is a long-acting version of Ditropan®, a popular medication that has been used since the 1970s to treat overactive bladder and urinary incontinence.
Ditropan and Ditropan XL are both manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson.
Ditropan XL Lawsuits for Dementia
Janssen Pharmaceuticals is facing lawsuits from people who accuse the company of downplaying the risk of dementia from Ditropan XL. These lawsuits cite several studies over the past decade that have found a 50% increased risk of dementia for people on Ditropan or Ditropan XL, especially adults over 55 who took high doses for years.
Early Symptoms of Dementia
- Memory loss
- Problems concentrating or focusing
- Trouble completing daily tasks (sorting mail, getting lost in a familiar neighborhood, following a recipe, etc.)
- Unusual changes in behavior, personality, or mood
Studies Linking Ditropan XL and Dementia
Ditropan XL and other commonly-used drugs increase the risk of dementia and dementia-like symptoms by around 50% in people over 55 years old, according to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine in June 2019.
The study looked at anticholinergic medicines, which is a class of drugs that includes Ditropan XL and many other drugs for depression, symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, bladder control, and insomnia.
Another Study Finds a 54% Increased Risk of Dementia
In 2015, another study published in JAMA Internal Medicine also found a 54% increased risk of dementia for people who took Ditropan XL or other anticholinergic medications for 3 years or more.
What is the Problem?
Ditropan XL and other anticholinergic medications work by blocking the action of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in involuntary muscle contractions.
The problem is that acetylcholine is also important in the brain, especially for memory and learning. This is why medications that block acetylcholine commonly cause unintended cognitive side effects.
Did Drug-Makers Warn Patients About Dementia?
The Prescribing Information for Ditropan XL includes warnings about serious side effects in the brain, such as hallucinations, agitation, confusion, or somnolence (extreme tiredness or sleepiness), but it does not warn about the risk of developing new-onset dementia.
Are Dementia Warnings on the Label for Ditropan XL?
The label also mentions dementia: “Ditropan XL should be used with caution in patients with pre-existing dementia treated with cholinesterase inhibitors due to the risk of aggravation of symptoms.” This risk is most important for older adults who are starting treatment with Ditropan XL or increasing their dosage.
Other Drugs For Overactive Bladder May Safer for Brain
Experts have long known that Ditropan XL and other anticholinergic medicines can have side effects in the brain, like memory loss or confusion. “There is compelling evidence of cognitive impairment with oxybutynin,” researchers warned in a study published in 2008. The same study found no evidence of brain-damaging side effects with darifenacin, which is another drug that is commonly prescribed for overactive bladder.
What is Overactive Bladder?
Overactive bladder is a common urinary problem that affects around 33 million people in the U.S., mostly older adults but also some people with diseases like cystic fibrosis.
People with overactive bladder may suffer from symptoms like:
- Urinary incontinence due to involuntary muscle contractions in the bladder
- Frequent and sudden urges to urinate
- Leaking urine
- Urinating 8 or more times a day, and 2 or more times a night
What Can I Do?
Talk to your doctor about medications for overactive bladder symptoms. Ditropan XL and generic oxybutynin have been around for decades, but there are also new drug that do not cross the blood-brain barrier as easily, such as trospium, tolterodine, or darifenacin.
Need a Ditropan XL Lawyer in Texas?
Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged.
Collen’s amazing success in the courtroom and well known dedication to his clients has earned him the recognition of his peers as one of The Top Trial Lawyers in Texas.”
The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more than 100 years of experience, participation in over 600 jury trials, and $260 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact our law firm for a free case review.