Nexium is one of the most popular heartburn medicines on the market, but new lawsuits say that it's causing permanent damage to consumers and some people are more susceptible to it. Ring of Fire’s Mike Papantonio and Farron Cousins discuss this issue.
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Nexium is one of the most popular heartburn medicines on the market, but new lawsuits say that it's causing permanent damage to consumers and some people are more susceptible to it. Now, obviously, let's get right to it. There permanent damage is kidney disease, actually, kidneys actually shutting down and this, I'm very familiar with this case. We're involved with handling this case. The ugly thing about ... this is another case where the FDA ... first of all let me back up.
Everybody believes, I don't know where they get this notion, but they believe that the FDA does testing before they put it on the market. That there's some little scientist back there that actually tests this stuff. But they don't. The FDA does nothing except accept the word of the people that are trying to get the drug approved to be sold. So this is another case that is going to show the clinical data that they gave the FDA was phonied up. They're going to find that ... I'd say probably every time you see a pharmaceutical case where people are being injured, probably three out of five time the clinical data that the marketers use, it's really a marketing ... this isn't about science.
This is about cash cow marketing, okay? So the typical kind of thing that we see is the scientists say, you know, you really can't say this about the product because we don't have enough information and the marketers say, nonsense, we're going to say this. And this proton pump inhibitor case, with Nexium, which is there for heartburn is killing people.
I mean, outside of a Tylenol or an Ibuprofen type medicine, these are one of the most popular medications in the country. Ten years ago, however long it was when they made them to where you didn't have to have a prescription any more, you could just get them over the counter, they became even more popular. Along that same time, back in 2014, I think it was, the FDA finally says, okay, we're going include this warning ... 2014 ... that it's probably going to ruin your kidneys, so we'll just put that tiny little warning on the box. Everybody'll be fine. Nexium, Prilosec, all these groups never once, you know, is this really mentioned in a commercial. At least not in a way that anybody can understand or read it on the screen.
Yeah, it certainly doesn't ... the numbers, let me talk about numbers. According to the new testing that's being done and the journals on nephrology, they're finding that a person taking Prilosec or Nexium faces a 96% increased risk of kidney failure. Kidney failure. 96% increase of kidney failure. Now if you're one of the lucky ones, you only have a 28% risk of chronic kidney disease. Now, this material is coming out of their own documents, you understand. This is the kind of material that the FDA could have found out, but the FDA ... it's the revolving door problem. I promise you we see it every case. We're going to find out that the people who worked on this for the FDA did something, hurried it up, got something done through the FDA. They'll be working for one of these pharmaceutical companies within a couple of years, regardless of how this comes out.
So, here's how they make money. They know they're making it ... let's say they're making five billion a year off of this product. They do the math on it. The math on it is, okay, well if we're making five billion dollars a year and we know this. Here's a truth that other, that most people don't know. Once a product is put on the market, it's virtually impossible, I mean, you can get it done, but it's very, very difficult to get that product pulled from the market. So, Nexium and Prilosec, same way. It's out there. People are using it. The chance of getting pulled from the market are slim to none.