Is There An Elmiron Class Action Lawsuit Over Eye Problems?

Yes. Hundreds of former users of the bladder drug are pursuing Elmiron class action lawsuits and individual injury claims against Johnson & Johnson and Jannsen Pharmaceuticals, over failure to warn about serious risks of losing eyesight and developing vision problems after taking the drug, including:

  • Blurry Vision
  • Loss of Night Vision
  • Distorted Vision
  • Difficulty Reading
  • Trouble Driving
  • Dark Spots
  • Central Vision Loss
  • Depth Perception Problems
  • Prolonged Adaption to Dim Light
  • Blindness

The Elmiron litigation emerged after a number of independent studies identified that users may be left with permanent eye damage from Elmiron, known as pigmentary maculopathy. However, the first information about a risk of retina disease was not added to the Elmiron FDA warning label until June 2020.

Reports have found that 20% of long-term users of Elmiron experience pigmentary maculopathy. It is a serious and dangerous side effect, involving a degenerative eye disease that causes progressive central vision damage and blindness.

What Is the Status of Elmiron Settlement Negotiations?

Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceuticals are currently refusing to negotiate fair and reasonable Elmiron settlement amounts for individuals left with eye damage. However, based on the strength of the evidence and clear indication that the drug makers placed the desire profits before consumers safety, our Elmiron lawyers maintain that each individual client should receive substantial compensation and benefits, including:

  • Coverage for Medical Expenses and Vision Treatments
  • Compensation for Pain and Suffering
  • Past and Future Lost Wages or Earning Capacity
  • Other Benefits for Retina Damage Caused by Elmiron

What is the average Elmiron lawsuit settlement amount?

As of 2022, there have not yet been any Elmiron settlements or lawsuit payouts, so the average settlement amount has not yet been determined. However, given the devastating impact vision loss from Elmiron can have on an individual’s quality of life, we expect the compensation to be substantial.

Based on lawsuit payouts in other vision loss lawsuits involving drug side effects, our lawyers expect that the average Elmiron settlement amounts could vary widely between $50,000 to more than $500,000, depending on the circumstances of the case and the impact that the Elmiron vision side effects had on an individual’s life. However, prior outcomes do not guarantee similar settlements for Elmiron eye damage lawsuits.

Ultimately the amount of any out-of-court settlement will be based on the amount of compensation a jury may award if the Elmiron case goes to trial. The following are some of the common factors that a jury will consider at trial, which will influence the Elmiron lawsuit settlement amounts:

  • The extent and duration of the retinal injuries from Elmiron;
  • The effect that Elmiron pigmentary maculopathy had on the overall physical and mental health or well-being of the patient;
  • The pain and mental anguish suffered in the past and which will likely be suffered in the future as a result of Elmiron vision loss;
  • The amount of any past or future medical expenses caused by Elmiron use, as well as lost income due to an inability to work as a result of the the eye damage;

Following Elmiron settlement negotiations, each individual client will have the option to decide whether to accept the offer and settle their Elmiron lawsuit, or proceed through the court system.

How long will it take to get an Elmiron settlement payout?

At this time, there are no global or mass Elmiron lawsuit settlements being offered. Therefore, our lawyers can not predict how long it will take before each individual Elmiron lawsuit case resolves. However, it is expected that the drug makers will face increasing pressure to settle Elmiron lawsuits over the next year, as trial dates approach.

In the federal court system, a series of early test trials have been scheduled to begin in January 2023, March 2023 and May 2023, which may have a big influence on Elmiron settlement amounts. While the outcome of these “bellwether” trials will not have a binding effect on other claims, they will provide information about how juries are likely to respond to certain evidence and testimony that will be repeated throughout the claims.

While it will likely still take a few more years to fully settle Elmiron vision loss lawsuit claims, it is important that individuals who experienced eye damage take immediate steps to contact a lawyer and protect their legal interests. Every day you wait to review a case may result in insufficient time to properly investigate and document your claim!

To help determine the settlement amount that you or a loved one may be eligible to receive, request a no-obligation Elmiron lawsuit claim review.

Elmiron Lawsuit Status Update: Fall/Winter 2024

All Elmiron eye injury lawsuits brought throughout the federal court system are centralized before U.S. District Judge Brian R. Martinotti, as part of a Multidistrict Litigation (MDL). As of late 2022:

  • Over 1,700 Elmiron lawsuits have already been filed and attorneys are continuing to investigate hundreds of additional eye damage claims that will ultimately be included in the Elmiron MDL;
  • There have been no recalls of Elmiron, but new warnings about the risk of retinal injury were added in June 2020. Lawsuits allege that if earlier information had been provided, permanent eye damage from Elmiron could have been avoided;
  • The first Elmiron lawsuit jury trials are expected to begin in the first half of 2023. These “bellwether” test cases are intended to help the Court determine how juries are likely to respond to certain evidence and testimony that will be repeated in claims filed throughout the U.S.
  • The drug makers are currently refusing to offer individual Elmiron settlements, but our lawyers expect this will change as more trial dates are scheduled or verdicts are returned.

It is not too late to find out if you or a family member may have a case. There are no fees or expenses owed unless a recovery is obtained.


Latest Elmiron Lawsuit Update

Update – October 4, 2022: Judge Martinotti has scheduled the first Elmiron trial to begin on January 30, 2023. This is expected to be followed by additional jury trials in March 2023 and May 2023, unless Elmiron settlements are reached to resolve claims.

Update – June 6, 2022: – An Elmiron lawsuit filed by Maria Windham has been selected for the first bellwether jury trial in January 2023. Ms. Windham developed pigmentary changes and macular degeneration after taking Elmiron for two years. While the outcome of the Elmiron trial will not impact the lawsuit payout other plaintiffs may receive, it will be closely watched and may signal how juries may value the vision problems caused by Elmiron.

Update – May 13, 2021: The Judge presiding over the federal Elmiron litigation has indicated that the first bellwether trial will be held in January 2023, followed by two subsequent trials. Combined the bellwether trials are designed to help parties gauge the relative strengths and weaknesses of hundreds of other claims, and may lead to Elmiron settlement negotiations.

Update – December 15, 2021: In response to a growing number of Elmiron eye damage lawsuits brought throughout the federal court system, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) decided to centralize pretrial proceedings before U.S. District Judge Brian R. Martinotti in New Jersey. Judge Martinotti is a well respected and fair judge, who has substantial experience presiding over complex mass tort lawsuits.


What Allegations Have Been Raised in the Elmiron Class Action Lawsuit?

Many individuals who took Elmiron and experienced eye problems may have suffered needlessly for years. According to allegations raised in the Elmiron litigation, drug manufacturers have:

  • Failed to properly research the Elmiron retina side effects before introducing the drug;
  • Failed to promptly follow up and investigate reports of macular degeneration, pigmentary maculopathy and other retina damage among Elmiron users;
  • Withheld critical Elmiron warnings and information from consumers and the medical community;
  • Knew or should have known that monitoring for signs of Elmiron vision changes with regular examinations may help users avoid serious eye problems;
  • Failed to promptly issue an Elmiron recall or updated safety warnings as it became clear that long-term users face a high risk of vision loss, blindness and other eye problems;

Do You Have Elmiron Vision Problems?

What are the side effects of Elmiron?

As a result of the failure to adequately warn about vision loss risks, Elmiron lawsuits are being reviewed for individuals diagnosed with pigmentary maculopathy, macular degeneration or other retinal disease after taking the drug. These Elmiron side effects may cause various types of vision impairment including:

  • Blurry Vision
  • Loss of Night Vision
  • Distorted Vision
  • Difficulty Reading
  • Trouble Driving
  • Dark Spots
  • Central Vision Loss
  • Depth Perception Problems
  • Prolonged Adaption to Dim Light
  • Blindness

Although there is mounting evidence that suggests the Elmiron vision risks were known by the drug makers for years before warnings were provided, Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen Pharmaceuticals subsidiary have refused to offer fair and reasonable Elmiron settlements for eye problems suffered by long-time users of their drug.

Johnson & Johnson and Janssen are global pharmaceutical companies, which have billions of dollars in resources that can be devoted to defending one of their top medications.

Our Elmiron lawsuit attorneys can help you level the playing field!

Has Elmiron induced pigmentary maculopathy been misdiagnosed as other eye diseases?

For decades, false and misleading information was provided to Elmiron users, urologists prescribing the bladder drug and ophthalmologists consulted after vision problems developed.

Due to the drug makers’ decision to withhold safety information from consumers and the medical community, many users who experienced symptoms of Elmiron vision loss were misdiagnosed with other eye diseases, such as

  • Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
  • Pattern Dystrophy
  • Stargardt disease
  • other Genetic Retina Deterioration

As a result of the failure to warn, users continued to take the drug, suffering further toxic side effects of Elmiron on their eyesight.

Our lawyers can help determine if you or a loved one may be entitled to an Elmiron lawsuit settlement. There are never any attorney fees or expenses unless a recovery is obtained!

Are there any costs to have an Elmiron lawyer review my case?

There are absolutely no out-of-pocket costs to review your case or hire our Elmiron attorneys. Potential claims are evaluated for individuals throughout the United States, and all cases are handled on a contingency fee basis. Through the use of contingency attorney fees, individuals have access to the experience and resources of our national law firm for their Elmiron lawsuit settlement — regardless of their individual financial resources.

You pay nothing up front to hire an Elmiron lawyer, and we only receive an attorney fee or expenses out of the money that is obtained from the drug makers. Our law firm receives nothing unless we win your case!

When will I find out if I have an eligible case against Elmiron?

After requesting a free case evaluation, our lawyers are often able to determine whether we can move forward with your Elmiron lawsuit case following a short initial consultation. However, in some circumstances it is necessary that additional details be obtained before we can confirm that a case is eligible.

If you decide to hire our law firm, you will be asked to sign a contingency fee agreement with our Elmiron attorneys, which confirms that there are no out-of-pocket costs associated with pursuing a case and that our lawyers are only paid if we are successful obtaining a recovery in your case.

What are the steps in an Elmiron vision loss lawsuit case evaluation?


Complete Our Case Evaluation Request Form. Providing contact information and some information about your elmiron vision loss case.


Get Contacted by Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. You will be contacted by our Elmiron law firm to help determine if financial compensation may be available for you and your family.


You Decide If You Want to Move Forward. If our lawyers determine that we can help with your Elmiron case then you decide whether to move forward and hire our us to pursue compensation.

CONTACT OUR ELMIRON LAWYERS Request a Free, No Obligation Case Review

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After speaking with our Elmiron law firm to review what options may be available, it remains your decision whether to form an attorney-client relationship and pursue a claim against Elmiron.

As part of the Elmiron lawsuit evaluation, we will review the facts and circumstances surrounding your use of the drug, and any resulting eye damage and/or vision problems that you have experienced, to help determine whether you may have a successful case. If you decide to move forward with the full investigation of your claim, a medical authorization must be signed so that we can obtain records confirming the pigmentary maculopathy diagnosis or other retina damage that may have resulted from Elmiron exposure.

Throughout the process, you will have an opportunity to speak with our Elmiron lawsuit attorneys to review any and all questions or concerns you may have.

Other Elmiron Lawyer Frequently Asked Questions

What is Elmiron?

Introduced by Janssen Pharmaceuticals in 1996, the prescription drug Elmiron (pentosan polysulfate sodium or PPS) is a medication for individuals suffering from “interstitial cystitis” (IC), which involves severe bladder pressure, bladder pain and sometimes pelvic pain. Impacting more than one million people throughout the United States, interstitial cystitis is part of a spectrum of diseases commonly referred to as “bladder pain syndrome” and is most common among women.

While it was sold as a safe and effective drug for bladder and pelvic pain caused by IC, growing research suggests that there is a link between side effects of Elmiron and macular degeneration, or other eye disease that results in irreversible retina damage, vision loss and blindness.

If earlier warnings and information had been provided about the potential risk of Elmiron eye damage, many individuals may have avoided these serious and life-changing vision problems, which may continue to worsen for years after last use of the interstitial cystitis drug.

How does the prescription drug Elmiron work?

Interstitial cystitis (IC) is often mistaken for a urinary tract infection (UTI), but is a chronic condition that has no known cure. As a result, most Elmiron users remain on the medication for years, if not decades.

The active pharmaceutical ingredient in Elmiron, pentosan polysulfate sodium or PPS, is a heparin-like compound that has anticoagulant and fibrinolytic effects. The exact mechanism of action for Elmiron treating interstitial cystitis is not known, even to the drug makers.

While the medication has been marketed as safe and effective, without adequate warnings that Elmiron may cause eye problems, users throughout the United States have been diagnosed with atypical retinal maculopathy and other eye disease that researchers have found is linked to long-term, chronic exposure.

Although there were more than a dozen published reports and papers involving vision problems or maculopathy from Elmiron side effects, the drug makers did not provide any information for users and doctors in the United States until June 2020, after thousands of long-term users had already been left with permanent vision loss and retina damage.

How do you confirm Elmiron caused retina damage?

After discovering the link between Elmiron and retinal pigmentary changes, researchers are continuing to examine the risk and study the mechanism of action that allows Elmiron to cause eye damage.

Pigmentary maculopathy from Elmiron is a unique form of damage to the macula in the eye, which provides central vision. This retinal injury is typically diagnosed by an ophthalmologist, following multimodal imaging eye exam.

This optical testing involves the use of multiple different types of imaging scans conducted at the same time. By correlating the different types of information those imaging scans produce, eye doctors can get a clearer picture of what is occurring.

In February 2021, researchers with Northwestern University published a study that identified a “signature” for Elmiron maculopathy, involving a “distinct clinical constellation” of retinal damage caused by Elmiron.

Subsequent findings by researchers at the Stein Eye Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles indicate that 1-in-5 long term users of Elmiron have evidence of the unique retina damage.

An ophthalmologist can easily diagnose this Elmiron eye injury through multimodal imaging scans that include fundus photography, fundus autofluorescence and ocular coherence tomography imaging all at once.

To learn more about how to get eye exams and speak with our Elmiron lawyers about the type of vision testing that may help diagnose whether you or a loved one are suffering from retina damage, request a free consultation.







Updated Studies Linking Elmiron and Eye Damage

May 2018 Update

A retrospective case series was published in the medical journal Ophthalmology, describing six Elmiron vision loss cases involving atypical maculopathy associated with long-term use.

Users were evaluated between May 2015 and October 2017, with ages ranging from 37 to 62 years old, and the length of Elmiron exposure ranging between 12 and 20 years. Primary symptoms included difficulty reading and prolonged dark adaption, with examinations revealing retinal pigmentary maculopathy.

November 2018 Update

Letter to the editor was published in The Journal of Urology, responding to a report published in July 2018.

Researchers with the Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Ophthalmology wrote to alert readers to concerning new observations involving vision threatening retinal changes associated with Elmiron long-term exposure. Authors recommended any patient with Elmiron vision symptoms undergo comprehensive ophthalmic exams.

May 2019 Update

Findings were presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Urological Association in Chicago from a study involving 10 Elmiron patients with vision threatening retinal degradation who had been treated for interstitial cystitis.

Researchers described a “unique form of pigmentary maculopathy”, and indicated that similar problems were not seen among 156 other patients treated for the same bladder condition who were not using Elmiron.

September 2019 Update

In a study published by the medical journal JAMA Ophthalmology, Canadian researchers described an eye condition as “pentosan polysulfate sodium (PPS)-associated maculopathy” or Elmiron maculopathy.

Researchers reviewed medical records of 35 long-term Elmiron users who exhibited characteristics of maculopathy, including women between the ages of 37 and 79 years old, who had received the drug between 3 years and 22 years. Leading symptoms of Elmiron vision problems included metamorphopsia, blurred vision and prolonged adjustment to dark light.

October 2019 Update

Health Canada announced an Eliron warning update that added information about the risk of pigmentary maculopathy reported among long-term users.

Updated warnings recommended that long-term Elmiron users have regular ophthalmic eye examinations for early detection of the retinal problems, and suggested that doctors should consider stopping treatment among users diagnosed with pigmentary maculopathy.

October 12, 2019 Update

A new study was presented at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, indicating that about 25% of patients with chronic exposure to Elmiron shows retinal damage signals.

Three California ophthalmologists reviewed records from a database involving millions of patients, and found 140 Elmiron patients who had taken an average of 4,000 Elmiron pills over a period of 15 years. 91 of the 140 patients agreed to come in for an eye exam, and about one-quarter (22) showed clear signs of drug toxicity. In the late stages, the retina toxicity can mimic age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and result in permanent vision loss.

November 6, 2019 Update

A retrospective analysis of data from a large U.S. medical claims database was published by the British Journal of Ophthalmology, indicating that at a 7 year analysis, Elmiron users had significantly increased odds of having atypical maculopathy or a new diagnosis of macular disease.

November 2019 Update

Case report published by Harvard researchers in Ophthalmic Surgery, Lasers and Imaging Retina described a case of Elmiron maculopathy that continued to worsen over six years after stopping use of the drug.

The researchers indicated that after using 200mg of Elmiron for 18 years, a 62 year old woman stopped taking the drug after developing vision problems. However, over the next six years, she continued to suffer increasing vision damage.

December 2019 Update

In the American Journal of Ophthalmology Case Reports, researchers with Kaiser Permanente described a case of eye problems from Elmiron misdiagnosed as Stargardt disease, which is a genetic form of retina deterioration.

A 41 year old woman sought a second opinion after suffering darkening vision, progressive difficulty reading and loss of night vision. Genetic testing was negative and the woman was diagnosed with PPS maculopathy from Elmiron, highlighting the importance of doctors considering medications of those with retinal damage.

July 2020 Update

Researchers with the Emory School of Medicine published findings in the medical journal JAMA Ophthalmology, finding that users diagnosed with Elmiron maculopathy continued to experience worsening vision even 10 years after they stopped taking the drug.

December 2020 Update

Strong evidence of a cause-effect relationship between the drug Elmiron and permanent vision loss problems was outlined in a study published in the medical journal Retina, finding that those with the highest rates of exposure were twice as likely to report experiencing symptoms.

February 2021 Update

Study published in the medical journal Clinical Ophthalmology identified a distinct signature of Elmiron-associated maculopathy, which can be detected through multimodal imaging by an ophthalmologist.

April 2021 Update

Researchers at University of California, Los Angeles published a study in the Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology, finding that 20% (1 out of 5) long-term users had evidence of Elmiron retina damage.

Do You or a Loved One Qualify for an Elmiron Settlement Payout?

The product liability lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. provide free consultations and case evaluations to help individuals review the legal options that are available to them. After contacting our office toll free at 1-800-522-0102 or requesting a free case review on-line, the facts and circumstances surrounding your potential case will be reviewed and evaluated by our Elmiron lawsuit lawyers.

If it is determined that you or a loved one may be eligible for financial compensation or a settlement, it is your decision whether to hire our law firm. All lawsuits are handled by our Elmiron attorneys under a contingency fee agreement, which means that there are never any fees or expenses paid unless we are successful in obtaining a settlement or other recovery in your case.

Start our two-minute survey to find out if you qualify for an Elmiron lawsuit settlement!


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