A group of Houston-area women say that a popular heartburn drug left them with serious pain.
Thirty-five women filed a lawsuit Wednesday claiming they suffered broken ribs, ankles and feet after taking Nexium, a drug commonly prescribed for heartburn, acid reflux and stomach ulcers.
The women believe AstraZeneca, the manufacturer of the drug, was aware of the risks, and now they want justice.
One of the women, 62-year-old Janice Allen of Cypress, says she’s had six fractures in recent years -- all of which she blames on the "purple pill."
The broken bones started several years ago, with the most recent occurring in February.
"I’ve had two in the left, one in the right foot, two ribs and now my left ankle," Allen said of the fractures. "You’re not getting to really participate in anything, and I have grandchildren, you know. And I want to take them to the park, and you can’t do those things. I’m terrified that I may have my next break."
Allen and the other women in the lawsuit claim the Nexium caused bone deterioration, which eventually led to fractures.
"I’d like to see them pay for what they did. I’d like to see them make me whole again, but I don’t know if that’s a possibility," Allen said.
The lawsuit points to FDA safety alerts that say heartburn drugs like Nexium may cause bone fractures.
The FDA mandated new warning labels about the potential risk, but Allen said she just found out about it.
"It really makes me angry," Allen said. "And they didn’t warn me, nor my doctor."
AstraZeneca would not comment, but they did release the following statement:
"AstraZeneca is confident in the positive benefit-risk profile of Nexium as demonstrated by extensive clinical trial data and safety surveillance data."
The company also said patients with concerns should consult their doctors.