In recent months, lawsuits have been mounting against the maker of the Mirena intrauterine device (IUD) over a serious condition known as pseudotumor cerebri. Bayer Pharmaceuticals is the maker of Mirena. Bayer is facing lawsuits over allegations that it minimized the association between Mirena and neurological side effects that include pseudotumor cerebri.
Mirena (levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system) is a hormone-releasing system that is placed in a woman’s uterus to prevent pregnancy for up to five years. Mirena is also used to treat heavy periods in women who choose IUD contraception. Mirena injuries may be painful, lifelong, and life-altering impacting the women implanted with the IUD and their families. Mirena’s complications may include pseudotumor cerebri, as well as amenorrhea, breast cancer, irregular bleeding, ovarian cysts, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), and uterine perforation. What’s more, women who have become pregnant while implanted with Mirena may suffer miscarriage and their fertility may be placed at risk.
According to the Mayo Clinic, pseudotumor cerebri occurs when the intracranial pressure (pressure in the skull) increases for no evident reason and is typically occurs when excess cerebrospinal fluid is present. Symptoms of pseudotumor cerebri appear to be similar to those seen in patients suffering from a brain tumor; however, no tumor is present. What happens is that the increased intracranial pressure tied to pseudotumor cerebri may lead to optic nerve swelling, which may lead to vision loss or blindness, as well as other injuries that may require surgery. Symptoms of this disorder may include:
• Back pain
• Blurred vision, double vision
• Neck pain
• Shoulder pain
• Tinnitus (buzzing, ringing in the ears)
• Vision loss