Stomach Paralysis Caused by Ozempic and Mounjaro?
August 17, 2023
Attorneys across the country are investigating claims against Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly and Co., manufacturers of popular diabetes and weight loss drugs Ozempic and Mounjaro. These drugs may cause gastroparesis, or paralysis of the stomach. Gastroparesis is not only uncomfortable and difficult for patients to experience, but it is also an incurable condition. Manufacturers failed to warn patients about the serious risks that accompany usage of the two drugs, which millions of Americans take each year. Mounjaro is the brand name for tirzepatide and Ozempic (and Wegovy) are brand names for semaglutide. Patients whose doctors prescribe them one of the drugs take it as an injectable once per week.
According to the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation (DRIF), diabetes is increasing at an alarming rate in the U.S. Approximately 37.3 million people, or 11.3% of the population, have diabetes. In addition to the millions who are already knowingly affected, the foundation estimates that another 8.5 million have diabetes but have not yet been diagnosed by a doctor. Diabetes affects many parts of the body and is also associated with serious medical complications such as lower limb amputation, kidney failure, heart disease and stroke.
Drugs like Ozempic and Mounjaro are used to reduce people with type 2 diabetes’ blood sugar levels and produce insulin by causing delayed gastric emptying, reducing glucagon levels, mimicking a naturally occurring hormone that tells the body that it is full and slowing digestion. But doctors are warning diabetic patients that they still don’t know enough about the drugs’ long-term side effects and that they come with plenty of known dangers as well.
What is Gastroparesis?
Some symptoms that individuals with gastroparesis experience include:
- Feeling full soon after starting a meal
- Feeling full long after finishing a meal
- Too much bloating
- Too much belching
- Pain in the upper abdominal area
- Poor appetite
Gastroparesis causes these symptoms in patients because the condition slows or stops the movement of food from the stomach to the small intestine. People who suffer from gastroparesis are more likely to experience other health problems such as diabetes, hypothyroidism, nervous system disorders like Parkinson’s disease or multiple sclerosis, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and scleroderma. Some of the most common complications associated with gastroparesis include dehydration due to repeated vomiting, malnutrition that results from poor absorption of nutrients, hard-to-control blood glucose (or blood sugar) levels, low calorie intake, losing weight without trying and bezoars, which are solid collections of food, mucus, vegetable fiber, hair or other material that the body is unable to digest. Bezoars can cause blockages, ulcers and internal bleeding.
Diabetes is already the number one cause of gastroparesis so if Ozempic, Wegovy and Mounjaro also cause the condition in patients with type 2 diabetes like the lawsuit alleges, it puts vulnerable individuals in more danger for experiencing complications than they already face. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says it has received reports of some patients experiencing severe gastroparesis after taking GIP and GLP-1 receptor antagonists. The agency will determine which actions are appropriate to take after it thoroughly reviews the evidence. Though the lawsuit does not mean that patients who take Ozempic, Wegovy or Mounjaro should stop taking their medications, it does mean it may be a good time to have a conversation with your doctor about any concerns you may be having or if there are other effective treatment options to consider. If you are experiencing any symptoms of gastroparesis, be sure to make an appointment with a trusted healthcare professional right away.
Drug manufacturers are legally obligated to warn of side effects of a drug that are not known or obvious. For example, it is not obvious that a diabetes drugs like Ozempic, Wegovy or Mounjaro could cause gastroparesis. When a manufacturer fails to warn users about potential risks (like hundreds of victims are currently alleging against Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly and Co.) and someone sustains an injury or becomes ill because of it, it may be time to file a products liability lawsuit. The attorneys at our firm are currently investigating these claims, so if you would like to learn more, someone at our firm can help. Contact a representative online now.
Philadelphia Products Liability Lawyers at Galfand Berger, LLP, Representing Injured Victims Since 1947
If you have questions about filing a claim for injuries you sustained, contact the Philadelphia products liability lawyers at Galfand Berger, LLP today. Call us at 800-222-USWA (8792) or fill out our online form for a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Allentown and Harrisburg.