Cipro, Levaquin Retinal Detachment Lawsuit for Blindness, Vision Loss

Austin Kirk

By Austin Kirk
Posted April 5, 2012


New research suggests that users of fluorquinolone antibiotics, which include Levaquin and Cipro, may face an increased risk of retinal detachment, which could lead to blindness, vision loss and other serious vision problems. Although data on the connection between retinal detachment and Levaquin or Cipro use is still being evaluated, the lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are considering potential lawsuits for individuals who have been left with serious and permanent vision problems.


In a study published in the current issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Canadian researchers found that the risk of retinal detachment was five times higher among users of Levaquin, Cipro and other antibiotics that are part of a class of medications known as fluorquinolones. This is a serious eye problem, which requires emergency treatment to prevent the retina from completely detaching from its underlying layer of support tissue.

According to an article by Reuters, the researchers conducted the study because they were concerned that the same side effects of Levaquin and Cipro that impact cartilage and connective tissue and cause a risk of tendon ruptures, could impact the eye. As the story points out:

“We know that these drugs are toxic to connective tissue and cartilage,” said Mahyar Etminan, the study’s lead author, noting past studies linking fluoroquinolones with damage to Achilles and shoulder tendons.

“We wanted to see whether this damage also may translate in the eye, because there’s lots of connective tissue in the eye,” Etminan, from the Child and Family Research Institute of British Columbia in Vancouver, told Reuters Health.

Unfortunately, their findings supported the theory, raising the question:

“Why didn’t the drug makers identify this potential concern and study the potential side effects of Levaquin and Cipron on the eyes?”

Our lawyers first began reviewing potential Levaquin lawsuits for tendon ruptures more than four years ago, after the consumer group Public Citizen filed a petition with the FDA to force the manufacturers to add stronger warnings for users that they should obtain immediate medical attention if they experienced symptoms of tendon pain, that could be early signs before a complete rupture. Unfortunately, the drug makers resisted those new warnings and FDA did not force the addition of a black box warning for tendon ruptures until July 2008.

With the risk of retinal detachment from Levaquin and Cipro, warnings are also particularly important as immediate treatment is critical to reducing the risk of the retina completely detaching, resulting in blindness or permanent vision loss.

Based on the findings of this study, it appears that consumers and the medical community could have been provided better warnings about the risk of retinal detachment, so users would be aware of potential early symptoms of eye problems, such as:

  • Flashes of Light
  • Floaters or “Hairs” Visible to the Temporal Side of the Central Vision
  • Dramatic Increases in the NUmber of Floaters
  • Feeling of Heaviness in the Eye
  • Dense Shadow Progressing from Peripheral to Central Vision
  • Impression that a Veil or Curtain Was Drawn Over Field of Vision
  • Central Vision Loss


While our investigation into these cases remains in the very earliest stages, we are examining whether individuals may be entitled to financial compensation through a Cipro or Levaquin retinal detachment lawsuit as a result of the drug makers’ failure to research the side effects of their antibiotics or warn about the risk of these serious eye problems.

All potential Cipro lawsuits and Levaquin lawsuits are investigated by our office under a contingency fee agreement, which means that there are no out-of-pocket expenses and we receive no attorney fees unless a recovery is secured.

To provide information about an emergency retinal detachment that occurred while taking Levaquin, Cipro or another fluorquinolone, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.

30 Comments • Add Your Comments

  • JOLEROY says:


    Posted on April 20, 2012 at 3:30 pm

  • JULELE says:

    I have developped many problems including eye problems after taking only 3 avelox pills… i have many floater in each eyes (about 8-9 big chunks) and i see red from the right eye… i am 26 years old and had absolutly NO HEALTH problems prior to taking that crap… it’s been 6 months already and it still goes on, and doctors deny that avelox or any fluoroquinolones could have caused my floaters, heart, nerve and msucle problems…

    Posted on July 28, 2012 at 4:16 pm

  • I. Hike says:

    Do not take this medication for any reason. Whatever is wrong with you, this will surly make it worst. After two years I am still having problems that affect my day to day living.

    Posted on November 27, 2012 at 3:51 pm

  • CIPRO IS POISON! says:

    Two torn retinas here due just twelve Cipro pills! Unfortunately my torn retinas are about the least of my worries at this point, as I’m completely crippled as well! My life was ENDED just days after my 30th birthday by Bayer pharmaceuticals. That was three years ago now, and I’m still unable to walk more than 100ft or so. If you’re thinking about playing Russian roulette with your life by taking Cipro, I highly advise you check out my website first (Google “Cipro is poison”…my site is the first one on the list!).

    Posted on December 3, 2012 at 1:54 am

  • Jacob says:

    I took Cipro from 12/24/12 – 1/03/13 a few days later I started to have eye problems. today i was diagnosed with retinal detachment in my left eye. Surgury is set for 2/04/13.

    Posted on January 28, 2013 at 5:29 pm

  • donna says:

    Each time I’ve taken Cipro or Levaquin I’ve experienced vision loss and the doctors kept telling me it had nothing to do with the medication. My vitreous gel detached in my right eye, huge floaters in both eyes and extreme vision changes in both eyes. Also joints aching, headaches and general malaise. I have diverticulitis and finally realized the doctors were wrong when my vision changed two lines on the eye chart after the latest dosage of CIPRO. I hope there is a law suit – I definitely want to be part of it – I’m anxious every day that I will be blind and I had no vision problems before taking this medication other than presbyopia.

    Posted on April 2, 2013 at 6:03 pm

  • Kyle says:

    Has anyone heard of Lipitor causing these things?I can barely see due to floaters and blurred vision…thanks

    Posted on May 21, 2013 at 10:41 pm

  • Dave says:

    I took Levaquin for a month in 2001, and Cipro in 2003. I have a lot of tendon damage, and a very large floater in right eye, and a number of small ones in left eye. Also glaucoma in left eye.

    Posted on July 17, 2013 at 3:12 pm

  • Joan says:

    For the past 70 plus years i was a robust healthy person whose past dr visits were only required at the birth of my children and an occasional minor ailment. During the past few years i have had a UTI which required medical help. Cipro was prescribed which alleviated the intense pain. Little did i know that the terrible aches and pains i am now experiencing would cripple me to the point where i now may require hip surgery. Until i found the many sites regarding Cipro i felt alone and thought my problems, not understood by my dr, were all in my head. OMG i am not alone, i have experienced all of the symptoms previously described and was ready to give in to being crippled. I think Cipro has totally weakened my immune system which i am now trying to repair by myself.

    Posted on July 22, 2013 at 10:16 am

  • steve says:

    While taking Cipro I suffered a retinal detachment. This turned into multiple detachments and eventual blindness.

    Posted on September 11, 2013 at 7:17 pm

  • Lorene says:

    I have taken Cipro and Levaquin over the years for UTI infections. I have tendon issues (getting MRI) and unable to walk without a stiff leg. There is NO SURGURY OR CURE for this! Also have cararacts both eyes (ready for surgery and eval to find out if any damage is related to Cipro). I want the FDA and Big Pharma to STOP this drug. It is very debilitating and no one ever counseled me about side effects! I am 74 and this all started 3 years ago, when it hit me hard. I am a very active person, exercise, lost weight, and my mobility is now constricted to a great extent.

    Posted on February 10, 2014 at 3:25 pm

  • Andrew says:

    I just recently took cipro and iv’e been having hallucinations and eye problems like you guys have described a contstant hissing sound in my ears and difficulty walking when before this i was perfectly fine lifting heavy matts without an issue where i worked now i cant even lift myself up it seems like and thats not all my prostate problems are not gone either witch is what it was prescibed for regardless that stuff should be taken off the shelves.

    Posted on March 26, 2014 at 1:30 am

  • Kevin says:

    Finished a 4 week dose of Cipro in end of April for a prostate infection. Felt great, and cured. Weeks late prostate issues came back, along with joint pain, muscle tightness and neuropathy. Now, almost 3 months later I woke up to several “floaters” in both eyes out of nowhere. Optometrist says no tear or detachment for now. It has been a week. Neurological symptoms are fading but now I’m scared for my vision. Thought I was a hypochondriac. Guess not….

    Posted on August 8, 2014 at 5:35 pm

  • Dennis says:

    I have had vision problems since I took Levaquin and cipro during 2007 and 2008. I was on it for about 120 days. My vision is not steady. Objects that are straight look like they are moving in wiggly lines. Dizzy and feel like throwing up most of the time. Flashes when looking left to right with my eyes closed and too many other aches and pains to list. Went to several Dr’s and told them this started with Taking Levaquin and Cipro and they back away not wanting to get involved. After 7 years I feel no better. When is a study going to be done to help people with vision issues from taking this poison? I am sure I have some kind of optic nerve damage or moving my eye left to right would note cause pain and make me dizzy.

    Posted on August 26, 2014 at 6:53 pm

  • Dennis says:

    I just listed vision problems I had after taking Levaguin and Cipro. I hope everyone thta has vision issues from these drups report it to the FDA. Maybe someday they will take vison loss from these drugs serious. Right now nothing is being done because eniugh people have not complained I guess.

    Posted on August 26, 2014 at 7:01 pm

  • Dina says:

    I was 100% healthy 55 year old woman. I took great care of myself and family – organic all the way. Took cipro for a hand infection 2013. Only took 6 pills when I noticed my Achilles tendon was swollen / tendor . Also shoulder blade and groin. 2015 my right hand gave out suddenly and completely.. my Achilles is still bothering me. Dr has me in walking boot and sleeping in one also. My groin pain is getting worse. My eyes have become light sensitive, painfull and very tired. mind Is foggy. I’m no longer able to hike, swim, heavy gardening, tennis. Nor can I play the piano. 2 treatments of Acupuncture has helped with arm hand shoulder pain. I’m getting worse not better. Take this Crap off the market. I told my Dr to put in our medical records that my kids and husband are allergic to this medication as well. I don’t want anyone to go through this experience. You don’t know if your allergic until you take it.. and then it’s too late.

    Posted on April 9, 2016 at 12:18 pm

  • Judy says:

    I took levaquin a couple of months ago as and I have had blurry vision ever since.

    Posted on May 5, 2016 at 8:34 pm

  • Judy says:

    I have taken Cipro and Levaquin over the years for sinus infections and UTIS. In April of 2014 I had to have emergency surgery for 4 tears and a partial detachment of the retina in my right eye. I then developed a cataract in that eye, a few weeks after fixing that my retina completely detached. Then it detached again, so long story short ended up having 5 surgeries on my right eye. Now the scar tissue is swelling and am having to go into to have a shot in my eye every 3 weeks to control the swelling. Also have extreme neuropathy in both feet and legs, recently having issues with my left knee with the tendon along the back is swelling. Not fun…angry that I was being prescribed this crap after 2008 when black label warning was issued.

    Posted on May 13, 2016 at 11:27 am

  • Laura says:

    My 19 year old daughter had major vision issues after taking Levaquin. Within 24 hours of starting the medication, she noticed vision in one eye was very blurry. Within 48 hours vision in both eyes were blurry. Within 72 hours she could barely see out of either eye. After taking her to several doctors my 19 year old who had no vision issues was diagnosed with extremely fast growing cataracts. Eye doctor said she was technically legally blind. Had to have cataract surgery on both eyes and vision still isn’t what it was prior to taking this medicine. We believe that the Levaquin and the extremely large does of 750 mg for a girl who only weighed 90 lbs sent her system into this downward spiral. She is also currently going throw liver issues including elevated enzymes in her liver and extreme bloating. Never had any of this issues prior to this medicine, but according to doctors and such, it’s not the medicine. We of course extremely disagree. Need help in find doctors willing to actually help her. Has been sad to see just how many doctors do not listen, assume things that are just not accurate and treat you like your crazy. They do all of this while my daughter suffers daily. They have no answers or no solutions. What is a person suppose to do???????????????????

    Posted on October 13, 2016 at 12:47 pm

  • Laura says:

    Please go see an eye doctor. My daughter at the age of 19 had the exact same issue after taking the medicine. Within 2 days her vision was extremely blurry. Ended up having to have cataract surgery in both eyes with 6 months of taking Levaquin.

    Posted on October 13, 2016 at 12:50 pm

  • Veronica says:

    Why is cipro still being prescribed? The FDA has known about these issues for a long time and enough patients on-line have written about their issues. I took cipro for 7 days and my joints are messed up. I can hardly sleep at night and I feel like an 80 year old woman. PLEASE do not take this medication! We need to inform as many people as we can about this medicine. The pharmacist nor the nurse practitioner told me about the severe side effects. If one of them would have told me that it was under investigation from the FDA (, I would have NEVER taken these pills. I am scheduled to have a lower abdomen ct scan soon due to lower back pain. I am also going to my regular doctor to see what he can do about my joint pain.

    Posted on October 25, 2016 at 7:23 am

  • Richard says:

    I took Cipro for a UTI in 2008. In 2014 I suffered retinal tears in both eyes and multiple repairs. How long is the time frame for Cipro use and subsequent damage?

    Posted on January 6, 2019 at 9:28 pm

  • Marilyn says:

    I was prescribed Cipro in 2013 for a UTI. I was just 26 years old. Also in 2013, I developed a posterior vitreous detachment of my eye. Now, whenever I look left or right, especially in the dark, I see flashing lights. My vision was permanently damaged by taking Cipro. Why did the companies do their research before putting Cipro on the market.

    Posted on July 27, 2019 at 2:05 pm

  • Jose says:

    I also had permanent floaters after taking Cipro and no one, the doctors nor the literature that comes with the drug, gave you any warning of possible vision side effects. This is as bad as it can get folks!

    Posted on September 21, 2019 at 3:54 pm

  • Frank says:

    I was prescribed Cipro in late September 2018. My neurological symptoms caused by Cipro are constantly changing. At the moment I feel burning in my back and in my right foot along with continuous burning in my groin. My neck feels tight and I have spasms in my upper back. My lower back hurts all the time and it’s difficult to walk. I used to be healthy with the exception of nasal allergies, but now I feel lousy all the time. About two months ago, I developed vision problems but did not connect them to Cipro until I did an Internet search about 20 minutes ago and wound up here. My eye doctor told me I have a retinal fold in my left eye, which causes me to see vertical lines as wavy lines. What prompted my visit to the eye doctor was a relatively sudden deterioration of vision in both eyes wherein I have double and blurred vision. I’m very angry about the fact that my life has been so severely compromised, apparently due to pure greed by certain pharma companies. I say greed because the dangers of Cipro and other quinolones have been well known for decades, yet nothing much has been done to curtail their distribution.

    Posted on December 29, 2019 at 9:17 pm

  • Anthony says:

    33 years old always been healthy. Doctor prescribed this crap cipro. 2 weeks on it, now floaters in both eyes and knee/joint pain now.

    Posted on January 29, 2020 at 7:57 pm

  • JEAN says:

    I was on Cipro long-term for treatment of Lyme disease (several years) and was also given it periodically for Lyme flares. I was never told it could cause any vision problems. I have had a detached retina in my “good eye” (left), have lost all functional vision in my right eye due to the progressive shadow and lacquer crack, and have now been experiencing the same shadows in my left eye, anticipating that I will have little functional vision left within the next year or two. Very upsetting since I’ve shown dogs for 40 years and am looking at having to hire a driver until I can no longer see well enough to show myself. I’ve already lost the ability to do much of the craft/art work that I used to be able to supplement my income with. If there is a correlation to the Cipro, I’m beyond angry, as I’m just now finding out about this !

    Posted on April 7, 2020 at 6:30 pm

  • Andrew says:

    After two years of bowel disease ( diverticulitis ) and at least four courses of Cipro and Flagyl, I had 14 inches of colon removed in March 2020. During the the summer of 2020 my left eye began deteriorating with a detached retina. I required laser surgery and a gas bubble injection to repair detachment, I still have some distortion of straight lines and have another visit with a specialist scheduled in a week…just wanted to be counted as a possible sufferer of side effects I was not warned of. Be careful what you take and read risk statements carefully. Ask your MD to disclose his opinion on safety and side effects of all prescriptions. Had I had surgery prior to a third or fourth course of these antibiotics maybe this could have been a better result…these antibiotics were most difficult to endure during each course, they were very hard on my body and I felt very far from well on them.

    Posted on January 6, 2021 at 1:07 pm

  • M says:

    I have many problems after taking Cipro for 14 days. First started with tendon issues, continued by join and muscle weaknesses and now eye floaters. I hope no one else use this poison:(

    Posted on February 27, 2021 at 4:33 pm

  • Brenda says:

    I was prescribed cipro in December 2016 and right after I took the first dose in the morning, I opened up my curtains and the sun was out and I instantly was blinded. It felt like a migraine but it wasn’t. I couldn’t even drive because of this. I was down in bed because I couldn’t even stand to have TV on. I went back to the doctors and I told them it came from them prescribing the cipro. My doctor goes it didn’t come from that medication. I still have not fully recovered from this yet. I still have problems. I even had my eyes checked too and nothing wrong with them. So I agree with what everyone else is saying about this drug. I did file a complaint with the ones who make this drug and I never got a response back from them at all.

    Posted on July 16, 2021 at 5:49 pm

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