Can Elmiron Cause Vision Loss? – What The Research Says


Elmiron is a drug that is prescribed for the treatment of Interstitial Cystitis. This is a painful and chronic bladder condition. It is most often mistaken for a urinary tract infection (UTI), but the infection is nonexistent. It is also known as pentosan polysulfate sodium or PPS. 

Research has shown that over 1 million Americans suffer from this disease. Interstitial Cystitis, also known as Painful bladder syndrome is uncommon to treat. However, several therapies can be used to manage it. These therapies are physiotherapy and biofeedback. At other times antibiotics have been used, but they have never been effective with painful bladder syndrome. The reason why the drug Elmiron is the closest to a solution we have been offered medically. 

Unfortunately, this solution to Interstitial Cystitis comes with a dire side effect. One that questions the supposed “aid” the drug gives. With a generous amount of people attesting to this, it will be foolhardy to go on with the mission impossible. Unless you have weighed your pros and cons, and decide that you can live with poor sight, rather than a bad bladder or vice versa.

Elmiron is a drug that is prescribed for the treatment of Interstitial Cystitis

With an alarming testimony of people who have been exposed to this medication and its accompanying malady over the years, doctors advise that patients see their urologist before using this medication, in line with screenings for those in use of the drug but have not shown any signs of pigmentary maculopathy. 

What is Pigmentary Maculopathy? 

This is a different type of maculopathy that is related to interstitial cystitis most used drug Elmiron (pentosan polysulfate sodium). This malady is seen in people who used the IC drug for a long period, to treat IC and bladder pain. According to research done in 2018, by Drs. Williams A Pearce, Rui Chen, and Nieraj Jain in Ophthalmology, this disease is typically found in people who have pigmented deposits that imitate specks found in the macula.

After this study by Pearce, several other researchers have concluded that all evidence points to the fact that the IC drug does increase the risk of developing Pigmentary Maculopathy. From the study made, victims of this IC drug have reoccurring complaints. Some of the complaints have led to a medication lawsuit where the producers of the IC drug be sued by the complainants.  This is because they felt defrauded, for not having been given a heads-up about these side effects before they purchase the drug. The most common complaints are:

  1. Reading difficulty
  2. Blurred vision
  3. Vision loss
  4. Difficulty alternating low lighting areas and temporary vision loss. 
  5. Vision loss is permanent in some cases.

Furthermore, researchers discovered some connections between the drug Elmiron and the growth of pigmentary maculopathy. This type of Maculopathy is presently the leading cause of blindness in American adults. Symptoms of this degeneration involve sensitivity to light, and an absolute loss of low-light visibility. This is an ailment that is avoidable, but sadly irreversible when it happens. 

The Side Effects of The use of Elmiron 

The possible diagnoses and side effects of Elmiron include:

  1. Unilateral or bilateral blindness 
  2. Blurred vision 
  3. Pattern Dystrophy
  4. Pigmentary Maculopathy 
  5. Visual Disturbances 
  6. Retinal Maculopathy 
  7. Vision Loss and Impairments
  8. Macular Degeneration 

These testimonies are compiled to further solidify that Elmiron is a cause of vision loss in people who have been exposed to the drug. 

Also, all these have to lead to a search for options that can be used in place of the Elmiron drug. Earlier we mentioned physiotherapy and biofeedback. Now, we are going to look at more options that can be beneficial to you, especially if you already take the drug. Also, if you are worried about these symptoms, and you are in use of the drug, do well to consult your prescribing physician. 


Alternatives of the Elmiron Drug 

Here is a list of alternatives that can be taken orally for the treatment of Interstitial Cystitis. In no particular order:

  1. Antihistamines: For a medication like Claritin (loratadine), this most likely will deteriorate urinary discomfort, urgency, and the pain associated with interstitial cystitis. 
  2. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications: In this type of medication, drugs that are common pain relievers like ibuprofen and naproxen sodium are used to ease the associated discomfort.
  3. Tricyclic antidepressants: Tricyclic antidepressants are medications like Tofranil (imipramine) or amitriptyline are listed as drugs that can aid with managing the discomforts of Interstitial Cystitis. 

All things considered, the fact is that Elmiron leads to vision loss, which far outweighs those that negate it. Therefore, if you intend to use this drug, please consult your physician or doctor duly.


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