ELMIRA, NY (WETM) – Megan Collins from the Law Office of Welch, Donlon, and Czarples joined WETM for this week’s Law Talk segment to discuss the prescription drug Elmiron (pentosan polysulfate sodium). Elmiron is prescribed for interstitial cystitis (IC) or Bladder Pain Syndrome. Bladder Pain Syndrome is a condition that almost always affects women and typically starts between the ages of 40 and 55. Elmiron is currently the only medication used to treat this specific condition.
The course of care is typically for many years and usually is a continuous basis. While Elmiron has been around for many years, since the mid-1990’s it is only recently that there has been a focus on the medication and certain eye diseases.
In the past doctors who have been treating patients on the mediation for a number of years and experienced vision problems, attributed those problems to age-related conditions. Recent research has made a connection between the medication and a medical condition called Retinal Maculopathy, where the pigment cells of the eye, change color. This change causes vision and eye dysfunction. These changes mimic another condition called, Macular Degeneration.
Symptoms of Retinal Maculopathy may include prolonged light to dark adaptations, lines appearing to be curvy, and dimming which eventually turns to a central vision loss.
Recent scientific studies reviewed the initial clinical trials and determined that at least some of the side effects that were reported, did not make it onto the warning label. So if you have been taking Elmiron for a number of years, and are having vision problems, see your medical provider.
You may also have a legal claim against the manufacturer.