Olmetec and Olmetec Plus are prescription drugs manufactured by the companies Merck Canada Inc., Schering-Plough Canada Inc. and Daiichi Sankyo Company, Ltd. and are prescribed to patients as a treatment for hypertension (high blood pressure) and other medical conditions such as renal disease. Olmetec and Olmetec Plus have also been linked to intestinal and/or colonic disease manifestations. Numerous lawsuits have been filed against these drug's manufacturers claiming that they have not adequately warned consumers of the gastrointestinal and related side effects that many be attributed to the drugs.
Did you or your family member take Olmetec
and were subsequently injured? you may be eligible for compensation.

Common side effects

Scientific studies have linked Olmetec and Olmetec Plus to gastrointestinal and related side effects. These side effects include but are not limited to:

  • Diarrhea (severe or chronic);
  • Vomiting and nausea;
  • Weight loss;
  • Dehydration and malnutrition (malabsorption of nutrients);
  • Intestinal damage;
  • Sprue-like enteropathy;
  • Villous atrophy/ blunting/ damage;
  • Inflammation;
  • Atrophy;
  • Kidney failure;
  • Abdominal and gastrointestinal pain;
  • Colitis;
  • Gastritis;
  • Immune system problems.

Scientific studies and case reports include:

  • In July 2013, the FDA identified 23 serious cases in the FAERS presenting onset diarrhea with significant weight loss and, in some cases, with intestinal villous atrophy on biopsy. All patients improved clinically after discontinuance of Olmesartan Medoxomil;
  • In early 2014, a group of physicians out of France published a case series which reported five cases of Olmesartan induced injury. All five had positive dechallenge results. The patients' symptoms returned with each reintroduction of the Olmesartan product. The authors concluded that the rechallenge data argued strongly in favour of Olmesartan being responsible, and that "this ADR may not be as rare as it may first appear.";
  • In 2014, a literature review published in Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics reviewed 11 publications and 54 patients, including three additional patients diagnosed by the authors. The literature review revealed that the mean duration of Olmesartan use was 3.3 years, duodenal villous atrophy was present in nearly all the reported cases, and increased intra-epithelial lymphocytes were in nearly two-thirds of the cases. All the cases showed improvement upon discontinuation of the Olmesartan product. The authors concluded that "Olmesartan-associated sprue-like enteropathy may be considered as a distinct clinical entity, and should be included in the differential diagnosis of seronegative villous atrophy.";
  • An epidemiological study from France provided the strongest causation evidence in the published literature to date. The study examined the risk of severe intestinal malabsorption associated with Olmesartan, compared to other ARBs and ACE inhibitors. The authors found that "Olmesartan was associated with an increased risk of severe intestinal malabsorption."

Olmetec and Olmetec Plus Misdiagnosis

The manufacturers of Olmetec and Olmetec Plus had not properly warned consumers about the possible side effects caused by these drugs. As a result, many patients are receiving incorrect treatment due to a misdiagnosis. Misdiagnosis related to Olmetec and Olmetec Plus side effects include but are not limited to:

  • Celiac Disease: An autoimmune disease in which the patient cannot tolerate gluten. Celiac disease mimics several aspects of Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus side effects and can be hard to distinguish.
  • Crohn's Disease: An immune related gastrointestinal disease. Some medications for Crohn's disease can also improve Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus related side effects.
  • Lupus: Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus can trigger an autoimmune response that mimics Lupus. Medications to treat Lupus may also treat Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus's side effects.
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): A generic diagnosis for abdominal pain and changes in bowel patterns.
  • Psoriasis, Sunburns and Insect Bites: An Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus drug induced rash is commonly misdiagnosed as other skin conditions.
  • Flu: Flu-like symptoms attributed to the gastrointestinal side-effects.
  • Food poisoning: Due to uncontrollable vomiting and diarrhea.

Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus Lawsuits

Since 2012, there have been studies published in numerous medical journals that demonstrate that the ingestion of Olmetec/ Olmetec Plus causes an increased risk of Gastrointestinal Disorders. The studies indicate the importance of informing patients and healthcare professionals of these adverse side effects so that they may make informed decisions regarding this medication. The U.S. equivalent, known as Benicar and Benicar HCT, are manufactured by Daiichi Sankyo. A lawsuit in the U.S. against the manufacturer has led to a $300 million settlement. The U.S. lawsuit alleged that the drugmaker, among other things, brought to market products that cause serious gastrointestinal injuries and misrepresented the safety of olmesartan products.

Free Case Review

Olmetec and Olmetec Plus have been linked to severe gastrointestinal (GI) problems such as sprue-like enteropathy in patients using or having used the drug. If you or a family member took Olmetec or Olmetec Plus and were subsequently harmed, you may be eligible for compensation.

If you wish to obtain more information on potential compensation or to be kept advised of the status of this class action lawsuit, please provide fill out the form below.

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