Trulicity Lawsuit: Gastroparesis Risk Ignored? Joins Growing Concerns Over GLP-1 Medications

Trulicity Side Effects

Troubled By Trulicity Side Effects? Lawsuit Claims Eli Lilly Downplayed The Risk Of Gastroparesis

Allee Smith's life changed dramatically after using Trulicity, a medication prescribed for diabetes. According to a lawsuit filed in April 2024, Smith now suffers from severe and permanent stomach paralysis, a condition known as gastroparesis. This case against Eli Lilly, the maker of Trulicity, adds another name to the growing list of GLP-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1 RA) medications facing legal challenges over this debilitating side effect.

Trulicity accused of insufficient warnings

Smith's lawsuit alleges Eli Lilly failed to adequately warn patients and doctors about the potential for Trulicity to cause gastroparesis. The complaint details how Smith developed persistent vomiting, diarrhea, and extreme abdominal pain after using the medication. These issues resulted in multiple emergency room visits and a dramatic decline in her quality of life.

“Defendants knew or should have known of the causal association between the use of GLP-1RAs and the risk of developing gastroparesis and its sequelae, but they ignored the causal association,” Smith’s complaint says. “On information and belief, Defendant not only knew or should have known that their GLP-1RAs cause delayed gastric emptying, resulting in risks of gastroparesis, but they may have sought out the delayed gastric emptying effect due to its association with weight loss.”

This product liability lawsuit isn't an isolated incident. Concerns about GLP-1 RAs and gastroparesis have been growing for some time. A 2023 study found that users of these medications, including Trulicity and its counterparts Ozempic, Wegovy, and Mounjaro, faced a tripled risk of developing stomach paralysis compared to those on non-injectable weight loss drugs.

Centralized legal action for GLP-1 lawsuits

In February 2024, the U.S. court system took a significant step by centralizing all federal gastroparesis lawsuits involving GLP-1 medications. This means claims against Trulicity, Ozempic, and others will be overseen by a single judge, streamlining the legal process. This Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) could involve thousands of lawsuits, reflecting the widespread use of GLP-1 medications for both diabetes treatment and weight loss.

The ongoing legal battle surrounding Ozempic, another GLP-1 RA medication, offers a glimpse into the potential future of Trulicity claims. Here's what we can learn:

  • Bellwether Trials: Judge Pratter, who is presiding over the MDL, may select a small group of lawsuits for early trial. These "bellwether" cases can influence future settlements or trial outcomes by gauging how juries respond to evidence and testimony.

  • Potential Settlements: If settlements for the entire MDL aren't reached after bellwether trials, individual lawsuits could be sent back to their original courts for separate trials.

The legal wrangling around GLP-1 medications isn't limited to the U.S. In Canada, a proposed class action lawsuit targets Novo Nordisk, the maker of Ozempic, for failing to adequately warn patients about potential side effects. This suggests a potential for broader international legal action.

Weighing benefits and risks: A growing conversation

The Trulicity lawsuit highlights the need for a more open and balanced conversation about the safety of GLP-1 medications. While these drugs offer benefits for diabetes management and weight loss, their potential for causing serious side effects, like gastroparesis, raises serious concerns. Both patients and healthcare providers need to carefully evaluate the risks and benefits before starting GLP-1 therapy.

The Trulicity lawsuit and ongoing litigation surrounding Ozempic could significantly impact the future of GLP-1 medications. Stronger warnings from manufacturers, potential changes in prescribing practices, and even new regulations are all possibilities as legal battles play out and the scientific community delves deeper into the risk-benefit profile of these drugs.

Smith is represented by Christopher D. Stombaugh, Diandra S. Debrosse Zimmermann, and Mark A. DiCello of DiCello Levitt LLP.

The Trulicity side effects lawsuit is Allee Smith v. Eli Lilly and Company, Case No. 1:24-cv-00035 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa, Cedar Rapids Division.



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