Women who were diagnosed with a rare brain disease after taking Mirena have filed lawsuits against Bayer downplaying the risk of brain injuries, such as Psuedotumor Cerebri (PTC) and Intracrainal Hypertension. Several studies link the hormones in Mirena with elevated pressure inside the skull, which can lead to chronic headaches and blindness.
Mirena is a T-shaped intrauterine device (IUD), a contraceptive that prevents pregnancy. Mirena works by slowly releasing 52-mg of the hormone levonorgestrel directly into a woman’s uterus for up to five years. Mirena is manufactured by Bayer HealthCare and was approved by the FDA in 2000.
Mirena Brain Injury Lawsuits
Bayer is facing over 1,500 lawsuits from women who were injured when Mirena perforated their uterus, migrated into their abdomen, and needed surgery to remove. In early 2018, hundreds of lawsuits were filed by women who had brain injuries after taking Mirena.
Brain injuries linked to Mirena IUD include:
- Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension
- Pseudotumor Cerebri
- Benign Intracranial Hypertension
- Secondary Intracranial Hypertension
These women allege that Bayer failed to warn that levonorgestrel, the hormone in Mirena, has been associated with dozens of cases of brain diseases that elevate cerebrospinal fluid levels, increasing pressure on the brain.
Mirena Class Action Lawsuit / MDL
In 2017, a federal judge approved an MDL (Multi-District Litigation) for more than 100 women who suffered PTC after using Mirena. The Mirena MDL is like a class action, because it centralizes many lawsuits under 1 judge in a single court. The lawsuits are overseen by U.S. District Judge Paul A. Engelmayer in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Mirena PTC Lawsuit Filed in Tennessee
In October 2015, a woman who was diagnosed with pseudotumor cerebri (PTC) after using Mirena has filed a lawsuit (PDF) against Bayer HealthCare for failing to adequately warn about the risk. The case was filed in federal court in Tennessee on September 29 (Case No. 2:15-cv-02645). Click here to read more.
Study Links Levonorgestrel and Brain Disease
The study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1995. Researchers described 56 cases of intracranial hypertension and/or swelling of the optic disc in young women using Norplant, a levonorgestrel-releasing IUD very similar to Mirena.
Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension, also known as Pseudotumor Cerebri (“false brain tumor”) is a rare brain disease that occurs when there is too much cerebrospinal fluid inside the skull. This puts pressure on the brain, causing symptoms like headache and dizziness.
Unless fluid levels are reduced, the disease can destroy the optic nerve that transmits signals between the brain and eyes. This can cause papilledema, or swelling of the optic disc at the back of the eye. Eventually, it can also cause blindness.
- Vision problems
- Ringing in the ears
- Nausea, vomiting
- Papilledema (swelling of the optic disc)
- Optic nerve damage