Elmiron, also known as pentosan polysulfate sodium, is a prescription only drug used to treat bladder pain associated with interstitial cystitis, or IC. Interstitial Cystitis a chronic condition that causes bladder pain and pressure, a condition most commonly found in women. The most common side effects of Elmiron are hair loss, diarrhea and nausea, but recently a new study has found that the drug could be toxic to the retina.
Elmiron, manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals (owned by Johnson & Johnson), was originally approved for sale in 1996 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It was approved under the Orphan Drug Act of 1983, or ODA. The ODA was passed to help facilitate development of drugs used to treat rare diseases, such as Huntington’s, ALS, IC and more.
Currently, Elmiron is the only oral prescription approved to treat bladder pain and discomfort caused by IC. It’s estimated that between 4 and 12 million people are affected by IC. Interstitial Cystitus can also be referred to as painful bladder syndrome (PBS), bladder pain syndrome (BPS), and chronic pelvic pain (CPP)
Elmiron and Pigmentary Maculopathy
As stated previously, the most common side effects of chronic Elmiron use are hair loss, diarrhea and nausea, but recently new research uncovered that the drug could be toxic to the retina.
Recent studies by the American Academy of Ophthalmology found that chronic exposure to pentosan polysulfate sodium (Elmiron) can cause pigmentary maculopathy. Maculopathy is an eye disorder affecting the macula (central part of the retina) and a major cause of blindness.
If you or a loved one has used Elmiron for more than 6 months and have suffered from any of the following symptoms and/or have been diagnosed with Pigmentary Maculopathy or any Retinal Pigmentary Changes please contact us today.
- Prolonged light to dark adaptation
- Blurred vision
- Central vision loss (as opposed to peripheral vision loss)
- Dimming of vision, blind spots, floaters, spots, impaired color vision, difficulty with near vision