California Woman Suffers Kidney Stones From Taking Yaz
California resident Lauren Steiner filed a new lawsuit in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California, on June 25, 2012. Steiner seeks to hold manufacturer Bayer Corporation for injuries she allegedly sustained after taking the birth control pills Yasmin and Yaz, and accuses the company of numerous failures regarding both contraceptives.
Steiner states in her lawsuit that the progestin used in Yaz and Yasmin, called “drospirenone,” caused her to suffer from kidney stones.
Plaintiff claims to have suffered Yaz kidney stones
According to her Yaz lawsuit complaint, Steiner was prescribed Yaz by her healthcare provider. She claims that after taking it, she suffered serious side effects, including but not limited to severe kidney stones and related injuries, such as physical pain, mental anguish, diminished enjoyment of life, and fear of developing further health consequences.
Steiner goes on to note that the Bayer product uses the progestin “drospirenone.” Unlike other progestins, drospirenone is a known diuretic, and removes fluid from the body. As a result, it can cause an increase of potassium levels in the blood, which can lead to a condition known as “hyperkalemia.”
Hyperkalemia can cause other health complications, including heart rhythm disturbances and blood clots, which in turn, can lead to a heart attack, deep vein thrombosis (Yasmin DVT), and Yaz or Yasmin pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lung). Because of its diuretic action, drospirenone can also increase dehydration, which can lead to kidney stones and gallbladder disease.
What are kidney stones?
Kidney stones are small, crystalline mineral formations that can form in the kidney from substances in the urine. Most pass out of the body unnoticed, but kidney stones that become larger than usual can get stuck in a ureter, or the urethra, blocking the flow of urine and causing great pain.
FDA reports of problems include kidney stones
Between the first quarter of 2004 through the third quarter of 2008, the FDA received over 50 reports of deaths linked to Yaz and Yasmin birth control. The reports included injuries such as heart attack, Yasmin pulmonary embolism, kidney stones, and stroke. Some deaths occurred in women as young as 17 years old.
Yaz and Yasmin contain estrogen, which can also increase the risk of high blood pressure. Left untreated, high blood pressure can lead to kidney damage.
Yaz lawsuit seeks punitive damages
While other plaintiffs have claimed Yasmin pulmonary embolism or Yasmin DVT, Steiner’s sole injury is kidney stones and related issues. She brings counts of defective design and manufacture, defective warning, fraudulent misrepresentation, and negligence, and seeks compensatory and punitive or exemplary damages.