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Nexium Class Action Lawsuit

This page is about Nexium kidney injury lawsuits. Our law firm is not taking new cases.  Our lawyers provide updates to keep victims posted on the developments in the litigation.

Nexium Lawsuit Update

Before we get into the nuts and bolts of the Nexium lawsuit, let us give you an update on where we are in the Nexium class action lawsuit.

January 15, 2024 Update: There are 12,820 cases in the MDL class action.

October 20, 2023 Update:  AstraZeneca Plc has agreed to pay $425 million to settle U.S. product liability lawsuits related to its heartburn and stomach acid treatments, Nexium and Prilosec. Users of these medications had claimed that they caused kidney damage. This settlement resolves cases in New Jersey and Delaware courts, with one remaining case in Louisiana scheduled for trial next year.

This latest agreement follows previous settlements totaling over $100 million involving other companies like GSK Plc, Procter & Gamble Co., and Pfizer Inc. related to similar proton-pump inhibitor medications.

August 16, 2023 Update: There are now 12,833 lawsuits pending in the Prilosec and Nexium MDL.

A settlement conference was set for Monday, but it has been postponed.

The next big event in the litigation is motions on plaintiffs’ experts on October 20, 2023.

August 1, 2023 Update: The PPI class action is entering its 7th year.  No litigation should take this long.

March 6, 2023 Update:  The first bellwether test trial in the Nexium PPI class action MDL was supposed to get underway this month, but the MDL recently issued an Order postponing that trial date to June 5, 2023. A second bellwether trial will follow in July, and a 3rd test trial is scheduled for September. This is the second time the Nexium bellwether trials have been pushed back. There was no explanation for the most recent postponement, but there is widespread speculation that the trial was pushed back because the parties are closing in on a global settlement.

October 24, 2022 Update: The next bellwether trial in the Nexium Prilosec MDL was supposed to begin on November 14, 2022 in the case of James Rieder, who claims that he developed chronic kidney disease from using Nexium for 5 years.

Last week, however, the MDL Judge issued an Order postponing the trial date to March 2023. The Order does not explain the reason for the delay, but it is widely believed that the trial was postponed because the parties are close to negotiating a global settlement and need additional time to make that happen.

This belief is based largely on the fact that the postponement came shortly after the MDL required the parties to participate in a settlement mediation.

If you have a case, you want to bring it now. There are statute of limitations concerns and you do not know how many lawyers will be taking these cases after a global settlement.

September 10, 2022 Update: Next month, the first bellwether test trial will be held in the case of Plaintiff James Reider (James Reider v. AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP, et al. – 2:19-cv-00850). Pretrial motions (known as “motions in limine”) were filed by defendant AstraZeneca last month in preparation for the upcoming trial.

The motions seek to exclude or limit testimony from certain expert and fact witnesses that the plaintiff intends to present. A hearing on these motions has been set for September 19, 2022. The outcome of the Reider test trial will be very significant for the future course of the PPI class action MDL. Two more test trials are set to follow next year.

August 3, 2022 Update: Stripped down, the Prilosec/Nexium boils down to one thing: the failure to warn of the risk of kidney injury. No one is seriously arguing for a Prilosec recall or a Nexium recall. The premise of the class action lawsuit is to warn of the risk. If the defendants could get that claim dismissed, this litigation would shut down fast. But that is not going to happen.

On Monday, the Special Master in the Prilosec PPI MDL issued a report and recommendation to the MDL Judge (Hon. Claire Cecchi) advising that the plaintiff’s failure to warn claims in the PPI cases are not preempted by federal law. AstraZeneca, and other defendants in the litigation, have argued that the Prilosec/Nexium tort claims under state law should be barred under the federal preemption doctrine.

However, Special Master Reisman advised the MDL Judge that the preemption argued is invalid because the defendants cannot show that the FDA would have rejected strong warnings about kidney injuries. Six cases have been selected for bellwether test trials in the MDL the first trial is set for November.

July 21, 2022 Update: James Rieder’s Nexium lawsuit is still heading for trial in November. The court heard motions for summary judgment this week. AstraZeneca and Merck sought to dismiss the lawsuit. The court did dismiss Mr. Rieder’s breach of warranty and misrepresentation, ruling (correctly, probably) that a television commercial for Nexium that does not mention the risk of kidney disease is not an express safety representation.

But every Nexium and Prilosec lawsuit is – at core – a failure to warn claim. Special Master Ellen Reisman found that Merck and AstraZeneca did not overcome the presumption that the doctors would have changed their care if provided a different warning. This means the most important issue in the PPI class action lawsuit survives and will go to a jury in November.

July 7, 2022 Update: The first Nexium bellwether trial is still set for this fall This will be the biggest event in the history of the Nexium class action lawsuit. Summary judgment motions are due a the end of the month.

June 30, 2022 Update: AstraZeneca and Merck lost their bid to dismiss a plaintiff’s lawsuit that alleges Nexium caused his chronic kidney disease. The defendants claimed the statute of limitations passes when his Nexium lawsuit was filed. The plaintiff, James Rieder, has a trial date in November 2022. Defendants are desperate to prevent this case from going to trial. But it looks like it is full steam ahead for the bellwether MDL trial. A win for the plaintiff would be a huge step toward forcing these companies to pay the reasonable settlement amounts to victims who suffered kidney injuries on Nexium and other PPIs.

May 28, 2022 Update: Motions for summary judgment were previously filed in the 6 bellwether cases in the Nexium-Prilosec PPI MDL. The MSJs assert that the plaintiff’s failure to warn claims are precluded based on the doctrine of federal preemption. These motions were filed months ago and since then a new decision on the issue of preemption has been issued in In re Fosamax Alendronate Prod. Liab. Lit., U.S. Dist. LEXIS 52627 (D.N.J., Mar. 23, 2022). The Fosamax decision could have some bearing on the preemption argument in the Nexium class action lawsuit. So the Special Master issued CMO No. 75. This allows the parties the opportunity to submit additional briefing on the pending motions for judgment addressing this new law.

April 20, 2022 Update: The judge in the Nexium-Prilosec PPI class action MDL 2789 has ordered the parties to start initial preparation for trial on a large group of 200 cases. The first round of bellwether test trials in the MDL is scheduled for October, but if these do not result in a global settlement the judge has laid out a daunting discovery schedule for the group of 200 cases which will be just the first of several large blocks of cases sent down for group trials.

March 1, 2022 Update: With over 13,000 cases pending in the Nexium/Prilosec Proton Pump Inhibitor MDL (, the judge scheduled the opening Nexium bellwether trial for October. It will be the first of three PPI bellwether cases to occur between October and March of next year. The scheduling order also the deadline for pretrial Daubert motions (April 4) and summary judgment motions (July 29).

January 27, 2022 Update: We now have a Nexium lawsuit trial date. Three bellwether trials have been set. The first Nexium lawsuit will go to trial on October 12, 2022.

January 19, 2022 Update: There are now 13,314 PPI lawsuits in the MDL class action lawsuit (2:17-md-02789). This includes not only Nexium lawsuits but Prilosec lawsuits, Protonix lawsuits, Prevacid lawsuits, and Dexilant lawsuits.

An Overview of Nexium

Our lawyers are looking for Nexium and Prilosec lawsuit cases. This litigation is hopefully winding down soon and there are deadlines to file a lawsuit with the statute of limitations. There are now over 13,000 PPI kidney injury lawsuits pending as of January 2022 that have been filed by victims seeing financial compensation. If you think you may have a potential Prilosec or Nexium kidney injury lawsuit, call 1-800-553-8082 or get a free online consultation here.

Nexium® (esomeprazole magnesium) is a drug manufactured and distributed by AstraZeneca. The pills are famously purple. It was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in February 2001, for the treatment of numerous stomach conditions such as the following:

  • Dyspepsia (upset stomach, indigestion, impaired digestion);
  • Peptic Ulcer Disease (PUD);
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD);
  • Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPR), also known as Extraesophageal Reflux Disease (EERD);
  • Barrett’s Esophagus (a pre-cancerous condition where normal cells in the lining of the esophagus develop into abnormal cells which can lead to adenocarcinoma (esophageal cancer);
  • Prevention of stress gastritis (type of ulcer caused by stress);
  • Adenocarcinoma (cancer of the esophagus);
  • Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome (gastric acid hypersecretion, severe peptic ulceration, and non-beta cell islet tumor of the pancreas (gastrinoma); and
  • Other forms of hypersecretion of stomach acid

Nexium is most readily available in capsule form of twenty to forty-milligram dosages and is taken once or twice per day depending on the doctor’s instructions for no more than fourteen days. It may be administered for longer periods under a doctor’s instruction. It is also less commonly available as an injection administered intravenously.

Nexium Is a Wildly Successful Drug

Nexium is AstraZeneca’s best-selling drug and the third best-selling medication in the world generating billions of dollars in sales. One statistic that stood out to us. At one point, 7.8% of US adults had used prescription PPI Products within the last 30 days. That is what you call a wildly popular drug.

Esomeprazole is now produced by several pharmaceutical companies under the brand names Prilosec, Aciphex, Dexilant, Zegrid, Prevacid, and Protonics, as well as its generic formulation, Omeprazole.

How Nexium Works

PPIs like Nexium work by impeding the secretion of stomach acid. Nexium binds with the proton pump. This works to inhibit the ability of the gastric parietal cell to secrete gastric acid. So Nexium acts to shut down acid production of the active acid pumps in the stomach. The result is less hydrochloric acid in the stomach which decreases the patient’s symptoms.

The medication belongs to a class of drug called Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPI) which is designed to cause a pronounced and long-lasting reduction in gastric acid. It has more or less replaced the use of h4 Receptor Antagonists. The results and similar but the mechanism of action is different.

The main difference between the two classes is the PPIs stop the production of gastric acid, whereas the h4-type drugs block the action of histamine on parietal cells (outer lining) in the stomach which decreased the production of acid by these cells.

Drugs belonging to this class generally are well tolerated by patients, and serious adverse effects from short-term use of the medication are rare. The common side effects are headaches, nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue, and dizziness. Adverse effects of omeprazole, although all PPIs carry the same risks, are reported more often than other PPIs mainly because it is prescribed more often than other PPIs. This is why Nexium has sold so well and why too many people looked the other way when evidence began to appear that Nexium caused kidney injuries.

Nexium Side Effects

Long-term use of Proton Pump Inhibitors has been linked to hypomagnesemia, an electrolyte disturbance in which there is an abnormally low level of magnesium in the blood. The body uses its gastric acid to release Vitamin B-12 into the blood and because PPIs inhibit the production of stomach acid, it is believed its use on a long-term basis can lead to a deficiency in B-12.

Infrequently, adverse side effects such as rash, itch, flatulence, constipation, anxiety, and depression are reported. Idiosyncratic reactions such as erythema multiforme (redness of the skin, caused by hyperemia of the capillaries in the lower layers of the skin), pancreatitis, Stevens-Johnson syndrome (a potentially deadly skin disease), and Acute Interstitial Nephritis are reported but occur rarely.

Also, studies have shown that long-term use of h4-receptor Antagonists and Proton Pump Inhibitors are associated with an increased risk of community-acquired pneumonia, dementia, and other side effects. Our lawsuits focus on kidney injuries. But it is important to understand the talk of other possible risks because it underscores the effort, or lack thereof put into vetting the risk for patients.

Researchers suspect that the suppression of gastric acid causes an insufficient elimination of pathogenic organisms. Therefore, patients who fall into the high-risk category for pneumonia should only be prescribed PPIs, and like medications, at lower dosages and for as short of a time as possible, and only when necessary. The medicine also has been shown to raise the risk of Clostridium difficile infection (a bacterium associated with colitis), by 1.7 times for those patients who are administered the medication once daily. The risk increases by 2.4 times in those who take the medication twice daily.

Nexium Kidney Injuries

Growing research tells us that Nexium and other proton pump inhibitors (PPI) like Prilosec may cause patients to develop chronic kidney disease and end-stage kidney failure is two-and-a-half times more like to occur with PPIs.

The long-term use of PPIs was not well studied. But the evidence has been pouring in in recent years and the results are not encouraging. therefore, potential kidney injuries caused by Nexium and lawsuits stemming from such adverse effects are going to require future studies to affirm how the Plaintiffs’ attorneys believe the evidence may play out. One thing is for certain and requires no further evidence: these types of kidney injuries are awful and when a plaintiff wins a Nexium kidney injury lawsuit, a jury will likely pay the victim a great deal of money.

Nexium Kidney Studies

Since the early 90s, there have been suggestions in the medical literature about a possible association between drugs like Nexium and acute kidney injuries. It began with a University of Arizona Health Sciences Center study that reported PPI usage was associated with kidney failure and other injuries. But most of the literature was case studies that concluded with something to the effect that “more studies should be done.”

More studies were done. The Journal of the American Society of Nephrology put out a study in 2016 that exacerbated calls to take a closer look at Nexium. The study compared acid reflux drug kidney risks among users of PPIs with another class of heartburn drugs. Over five years, researchers found that 15% of PPI users ended up with chronic kidney disease. That is a big number, right? The study also suggests that injury and the degree of injury may be dose-responsive. In other words, the longer and the more of the drug that you took, the greater your risk of developing a kidney injury.

In 2007, a Journal of Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics. titled, “Systematic review: proton pump inhibitor-associated acute interstitial nephritis.” The authors found that the long-term use of PPIs like Nexium was associated with interstitial nephritis.

Other articles have continued along these same lines: PPI increases the risk of kidney disease.

Has There Been a Nexium Recall?

There has not been a Nexium recall. Here is what may surprise you: our lawyers are not pushing for a Nexium recall. Why? Because some patients might want to take Nexium despite the harm it might cause to their kidneys. The premise of the Nexium class action lawsuit is that AstraZeneca should warn doctors and patients of the risk of acute interstitial nephritis and other kidney injuries and let them decide whether the risk is worth the benefits.

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