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Written By: Robert King, Esq.
Legal Review By: Sandy Fazili, Esq.
The Zepbound Lawsuit is an active lawsuit
See If You Qualify

Zepbound (generic name: tirzepatide), an injectable medication manufactured by Eli Lilly, is meant to help patients with obesity with weight management. Zepbound has recently gained popularity, but it has also gained attention for its health risks. It can cause an array of bothersome side effects and is linked to serious health problems like gastroparesis, intestinal blockages, kidney failure, and thyroid cancer.

A mounting number of Zepbound lawsuits has led to multidistrict litigation with numerous pending lawsuits regarding the drug’s severe side effects and lack of adequate warnings. New cases are being added steadily as more and more patients are experiencing the disadvantages of using GLP-1 drugs to lose weight.

Zepbound Lawsuit Overview

Zepbound is a treatment prescribed by physicians to help patients manage their weight. However, despite its intended benefits, Zepbound has become the center of controversy due to its severe side effects, particularly gastrointestinal issues.

One of the largest risks associated with using Zepbound is the development of gastroparesis, also known as delayed gastric emptying or stomach paralysis. Many patients taking GLP-1 agonists have experienced persistent vomiting, intestinal blockages, and other digestive complications that have severely impacted their quality of life and required urgent medical attention and/or repeat hospital visits.

As the number of negative experiences with Zepbound continues to grow, so do concerns about the manufacturer’s transparency about potential drug side effects. Patients and healthcare providers are coming forward to share their experiences and struggles, which has led to an influx of legal action against Eli Lilly. The growing number of legal claims seek compensation and justice while holding yet another pharmaceutical company responsible for allegedly putting the public at risk to prioritize profit over safety and transparency.

King Law is currently investigating Zepbound lawsuits involving a diagnosis of:

  • Gastroparesis
  • Stomach Paralysis
  • Gastrointestinal Obstruction
  • Illeus
  • Blindness and/or vision problems
  • Daily vomiting lasting at least 3 weeks
  • Bile Duct Cancer
  • Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS)
  • Gallbladder Cancer
  • Sinus Cancer

Affected individuals are encouraged to contact our office to discuss their legal options. Consultations are provided free of charge and without obligation to retain our services.

Zepbound Lawsuit Update – July 2024

May 2024 – More Research and Patient Records Connect Stomach Paralysis to Latest GLP-1 Medications

Stomach paralysis from taking medications like Ozempic and Mounjaro has been a concern for several months. Originally, severe gastrointestinal issues were considered rare. But as more studies and analysis of patient records occur, it’s clear these severe side effects are becoming more and more consistent for patients taking GLP-1 medications, including Zepbound and Wegovy

Despite these findings, Eli Lilly increased its money investment to $9 million to boost production for tirzepatide and other medications. 

February 2024 – Mounjaro Cases Consolidated Into Multidistrict Litigation

Mounjaro, another medication by Eli Lilly with the same active ingredient as Zepbound (tirzepatide), has had serious concerns with stomach paralysis and intestinal blockages. The growing number of cases against Eli Lilly for the lack of adequate warnings about Mounjaro led to consolidation into multidistrict litigation (MDL 3094) in February 2024. 

December 5, 2023 – Zepbound Released to Market 

A month after getting FDA approval, Zepbound was released to market and available at retail and mail-order pharmacies. The prescription medication is geared toward individuals with obesity who have a BMI higher than 30 or who are overweight with a BMI of 27 or higher. Patients must also have a weight-related medical diagnosis such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, or hypertension. 

November 8, 2023 – FDA Approves Zepbound for Weight Management

After positive findings from successful clinical trials involving Zepbound for weight management, it was approved by the FDA. There is a large market for weight loss medications—according to the FDA, around 70% of Americans dealing with obesity or being overweight, many of whom also have a medical diagnosis contributing to their weight. 

September 15, 2023 – Study Finds Strong Correlation Between Tirzepatide and Gastrointestinal Issues

In September 2023, one of many studies confirmed the “significant prevalence” of gastrointestinal issues with tirzepatide. The incidence of side effects increased with dosage. For example, nausea occurred for 173 patients on 5mg, 237 patients on 10mg, and 283 patients on 15mg. Vomiting occurred for 69 patients on 5mg, 106 patients on 10mg, and 132 patients on 15mg. 

August 28, 2023 – Lawsuit Filed Against Eli Lilly Due to Severe Mounjaro Side Effects

In August 2023, one of the first lawsuits was filed against drug manufacturers of the newest weight loss medications because of severe side effects. Jaclyn Bjorklund sued Novo Nordisk and Elil Lilly for inadequate warnings for Ozempic (active ingredient: semaglutide) and Mounjaro (active ingredient: tirzepatide). The claimant suffered from excessive vomiting requiring medication, her teeth falling out because of the vomiting, stomach pain, gastrointestinal burning, and hospitalization multiple times from stomach issues related to the drugs.

About the Zepbound Lawsuit:

What Is Zepbound?

Zepbound, a brand of tirzepatide, is a GLP-1 drug designed to help chronic health conditions like chronic weight issues. It’s designed for adults who are obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m²) or overweight (BMI ≥ 27 kg/m²) with at least one weight-related condition such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, or high cholesterol. Zepbound aims to help keep these conditions under control, reduce symptoms, and decrease the risk of associated complications.

Zepbound works by activating receptors for two gut hormones, GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide-1) and GIP (glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide). In other words, it works by stimulating certain hormones. This can help reduce appetite, decrease food intake, encourage patients to keep a reduced-calorie diet, and support increased physical activity to maintain weight loss. Patients administer the medicine via subcutaneous injection once weekly with dosages starting at 2.5mg and typically going up to 5mg, 10mg, or 15mg, depending on the doctor’s recommendation and patient’s response.

Zepbound showed success in helping manage chronic weight issues in clinical trials, earning its FDA approval in November 2023. The approval was based on data from two randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies involving more than 3,000 overweight or obese adults. Participants had notable weight loss over 72 weeks, highlighting the drug’s potential to provide substantial benefits in managing chronic weight issues.

Infographic describing what the drug Zepbound is used for, how it works, the manufacturer, how often it is used, the dosage levels, and where it is administered on the body.

How Does Zepbound Work?

Zepbound works by activating both GLP-1 and GIP receptors. Its active ingredient, tirzepatide, is a synthetic polypeptide that mimics the actions of these hormones. GLP-1 helps regulate appetite, slows stomach emptying, and boosts insulin secretion. Meanwhile, GIP works to improve blood glucose control when eating. Combined, these actions help manage appetite and blood sugar levels.

In summary, Zepbound:

  • Suppresses appetite and increases feelings of being full to decrease calorie consumption and lower food cravings
  • Enhances insulin secretion, improves blood glucose control, and lowers hypoglycemia
  • Delays gastric emptying so you feel fuller for longer and eat less
  • Increases adiponectin levels to help regulate glucose levels and fatty acid breakdown

As previously mentioned, Zepbound is injected weekly into the stomach, thigh, or upper arm. It takes around 24 hours to fully absorb and patients often experience effects within a day, though full therapeutic benefits may not be seen until after four to six months of taking the drug. It is approved for chronic weight management, but tirzepatide is also approved for type 2 diabetes as the medication Mounjaro.

 

Zepbound Side Effects and Health Risks

While Zepbound has been able to help many patients with glucose management and weight loss, there are multiple concerns about negative side effects.

Common side effects include:

  • Gastrointestinal issues: Nausea, vomiting, constipation, and abdominal pain
  • Injection site reactions: Redness, swelling, and pain
  • Systemic issues: Fatigue, indigestion, heartburn, belching, and hair loss

More severe side effects include:

  • Thyroid problems: Medullary thyroid cancer and pancreatitis with severe, persistent abdominal pain
  • Gallbladder problems with symptoms such as upper abdominal pain, fever, jaundice, or clay-colored stools
  • Increased risk of hypoglycemia with symptoms such as dizziness, sweating, confusion, and shakiness
  • Severe vomiting that leads to dehydration and kidney problems
  • Mental health concerns such as depression and suicidal thoughts
  • Vision changes from rapid changes in blood glucose levels

Some patients should not use Zepbound, such as those who have or are at risk for medullary thyroid carcinoma or multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2. Furthermore, an allergic reaction could lead to severe reactions such as swelling of the face, lips, tongue, and throat, trouble breathing and swallowing, severe rash, and rapid heartbeat. Any symptoms should be reported to a healthcare provider as soon as possible and severe reactions require immediate medical attention.

Infographic listing the common and severe side effects of Zepbound, pointing each side effect to a place on the body.

Gastroparesis, also known as stomach paralysis, is a potential severe side effect of tirzepatide. This condition occurs when the stomach has difficulty emptying food into the small intestine, which can slow or stop the movement of food, causing various digestive issues. Symptoms of gastroparesis include nausea, vomiting, and feeling full after eating only a small amount of food. It can not only be very uncomfortable but can also lead to dehydration and malnutrition.

Clinical trial findings have shown:

  • Patients taking tirzepatide were more likely to experience gastrointestinal issues like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, decreased appetite, and dyspepsia.
  • Severe symptom prevalence varies based on the medication dosage
  • Some patients with type 2 diabetes reported developing gastroparesis after using tirzepatide as part of their diabetes management plan
  • It’s important to monitor for gastrointestinal symptoms in patients using tirzepatide, especially if there’s an existing risk for digestive issues.

In addition to gastroparesis, other common gastrointestinal symptoms linked to tirzepatide include nausea, constipation, decreased appetite, indigestion (dyspepsia), diarrhea, and vomiting. These symptoms are prevalent among individuals on weight management plans and those managing type 2 diabetes with tirzepatide. These symptoms can affect adherence to treatment and overall well-being, emphasizing the need for healthcare providers to be vigilant and proactive in addressing these side effects.

Studies Linking GLP-1 to Stomach Paralysis

For more information on the connection between medications like Zepbound and gastroparesis, review the following scholarly articles:

Zepbound FDA Approval and Its Black Box Warning

Zepbound’s FDA approval came on November 8, 2023. The medication was approved for chronic weight management with patients who have obesity or who are overweight with at least one weight-related condition. The approval came after clinical trials involving 3,477 patients (2,519 on Zepbound and 958 on a placebo):

  • Patients taking 5mg of Zepbound lost 15% of their body weight (study 1)
  • Patients taking 10mg of Zepbound lost 19.5% (study 1) and 12.8% (study 2) of their body weight
  • Patients taking 15mg of Zepbound lost 20.9% (study 1) and 14.7% (study 2) of their body weight
  • Patients taking the placebo lost 3.1% (study 1) and 3.2% (study 2) of their body weight

Zepbound was released to market on December 5, 2023, with six available dosages available to those with a prescription: 2.5mg, 5mg, 7.5mg, 10mg, 12.5mg, and 15mg. It included a box warning regarding the risk of thyroid C-cell tumors with contraindications for patients with:

  • A personal or family history of medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC)
  • Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2
  • Serious hypersensitivity to tirzepatide or any Zepbound excipients

Monitoring is encouraged to look for symptoms of thyroid tumors, such as a lump in the neck, unexplained hoarseness, trouble swallowing, and shortness of breath. Patients should report all symptoms to a healthcare provider and seek immediate care for serious side effects that could be linked to pancreatitis, gallbladder problems, hypoglycemia, kidney problems, and mental health issues.

Zepbound Manufacturer: Eli Lilly and Company

Zepbound’s manufacturer, Eli Lilly and Company, is a global pharmaceutical company with headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana, a presence in more than 120 countries, and research facilities worldwide. Eli Lilly produces a range of products to treat diabetes, cancer, autoimmune disorders, and mental health conditions. After the development of Zepbound and anticipated demand, the company expanded its manufacturing and quality control processes with distribution to retail and mail-order pharmacies.

Despite Eli Lilly’s success in the pharmaceutical industry, it now faces significant legal issues regarding Zepbound. Lawsuits seek to hold the company accountable for allegedly not providing adequate warnings to customers about the risks of taking this medication.

Zepbound Active and Inactive Ingredients

The active ingredient in Zepbound is tirzepatide. It is a dual agonist of GLP-1 and GIP receptors to help regulate blood sugar levels and reduce appetite to improve glycemic control and support weight loss in patients with chronic conditions.

There are also several inactive ingredients in Zepbound with varying purposes, including:

  • Water, sodium chloride, and sodium phosphate dibasic heptahydrate (for injection)
  • Hydrochloric acid solution and/or sodium hydroxide solution (to adjust pH)

The medication comes packaged as pre-filled, single-dose pens of varying dosages that typically start as 2.5mg once weekly and can be increased after four weeks in 2.5mg increments with a maximum dosage of 15mg weekly.

The solution will typically appear clear, colorless, or slightly yellow within the pens and should be refrigerated (36°F to 46°F) within the packaging to keep the medication away from the light. If taken out of the refrigerator, it can be kept at room temperature for up to 21 days but cannot be returned to the refrigerator. Patients should follow all instructions that come with the medication and reach out to their healthcare provider or pharmacist with any questions or concerns.

Who Qualifies to File a Zepbound Lawsuit?

Despite the reported potential of Zepbound to help patients, many continue to suffer from and develop serious health problems. As a result more and more people are filing lawsuits against Eli Lilly.

To qualify for a lawsuit, claimants typically must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be able to provide proof of Zepbound use for weight loss.
  • Must have documented proof of health complications like ileus, gastroparesis, stomach paralysis, or gastrointestinal blockage.
  • Must have documentation from a doctor or gastroenterologist to show a direct correlation between Zepbound and the noted health problems (such as expert testimonies, medical records, diagnostic reports, etc.).
  • Health issues must have caused serious complications that required medical intervention, such as emergency room visits, hospitalization, or an appointment with a gastroenterologist.

If you feel you could be eligible for a Zepbound legal claim, contact King Law today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation. We will help confirm your eligibility and ensure you file within the required timeline to qualify for compensation. Failure to act as soon as possible could exclude you from being able to seek legal recourse.

Infographic of two speech bubbles: one asking how someone qualifies for a Zepbound lawsuit, the responding one listing the qualifying criteria.

Proof to Gather Before Filing Your Zepbound Lawsuit

Evidence is key to building a successful Zepbound case. This may include:

  • Appointment history
  • Medical records
  • Prescription history
  • Doctor’s notes
  • Consultation findings
  • Witness statements

Speak with an attorney who has experience handling similar product liability lawsuits, like those at King Law. We know what type of evidence is needed to build a strong case and will guide you through the entire process as you prepare to file.

Statute of Limitations for a Zepbound Lawsuit

Statutes of limitations establish a certain timeline for filing a lawsuit. Missing this timeline could make you ineligible to file. Statutes vary based on the type of claim (personal injury or wrongful death) and the state in which you file. In many cases, personal injury lawsuits must be filed within 2-3 years after the date of diagnosis or injury. Therefore, victims often have 2-3 years to file a lawsuit after being diagnosed with a serious health condition related to Zepbound.

How to File a Zepbound Lawsuit

To file a Zepbound lawsuit:

  1. Set up an initial consultation with an experienced attorney.
  2. Begin gathering evidence to prove you took Zepbound for weight loss and developed a related, serious health condition.
  3. Be available to your attorney as they build and file your case with the appropriate court.
  4. Follow your attorney’s guidance if presented with an option to reach a settlement, negotiate, or go to trial.

Again, be prepared to collect as much evidence as possible such as medical records, testimonies, doctor’s notes, medical bills, prescription information, and more to detail your experience taking Zepbound and resulting health issues plus their financial impact.

Zepbound Settlement and Payout Amounts

Many lawsuits involving medication-related product liability end up reaching a settlement, though some can go to trial where a jury will issue a verdict, hopefully in your favor. The amount you can receive from a Zepbound lawsuit can vary greatly depending on the specifics and strength of the case.

Based on similar cases, we anticipate settlements to range from $400,000 to $700,000. The severity of your diagnosis and extent of damages can strongly influence your total payout. While there isn’t a standard amount to expect, working with an experienced law firm can help ensure maximum compensation.

Contact a Zepbound Lawyer

Hiring an experienced law firm like King Law is crucial for handling a Zepbound lawsuit, particularly because of our extensive expertise handling prescription drug-related claims. With decades of combined experience, King Law’s attorneys possess a deep understanding of the complexities involved in these cases, from gathering critical medical documentation to navigating the intricate legal landscape.

Our dedication and compassion ensure that our clients have the best chance of obtaining justice and compensation for their suffering from Zepbound. Contact King Law as soon as possible to confirm your eligibility and file a lawsuit within a timely manner to ensure your rights are protected within the statute of limitations.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Learn more about Zepbound and filing a Zepbound-related lawsuit by reading answers to frequently asked questions:

What is the Zepbound lawsuit about?
Individuals who took Zepbound for weight-related purposes and developed a serious health problem like persistent vomiting or stomach paralysis are now suing the manufacturer for its negligence and to recover compensation for medical bills and other damages.
Who is the maker of Zepbound?
Eli Lilly is the manufacturer of Zepbound.
What is the active ingredient in Zepbound?
The active ingredient of Zepbound is tirzepatide, which is the alleged cause of Zepbound-related health problems.
When was Zepbound approved by the FDA?
Zepbound earned FDA approval on November 8, 2023.
What is the difference between Mounjaro and Zepbound?
Mounjaro and Zepbound both contain tirzepatide but while Zepbound is approved for weight loss/weight management, Mounjaro is approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
Does Zepbound cause gastroparesis?
Some patients who used Zepbound were then diagnosed with gastroparesis.
What are the side effects of Zepbound?
Zepbound can cause nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, stomach pain, indigestion and heartburn, tiredness, belching, and allergic or injection site reactions. Severe side effects may include persistent vomiting, gastroparesis, stomach paralysis, and other serious gastrointestinal issues.
How long do Zepbound side effects last?
Side effects can last from days to weeks, depending on the patient and how they respond to Zepbound. However, some severe side effects, like gastroparesis, may require discontinuation of the medication to resolve, in addition to further treatment.
Is there a class action lawsuit against Zepbound?
There is not yet a class action lawsuit for Zepbound. However, an influx of cases for Mounjaro, which has the same active ingredient but is used for type 2 diabetes, has led to consolidation into multidistrict litigation (MDL).
What gastrointestinal symptoms are linked to tirzepatide?
Tirzepatide is linked to nausea, constipation, vomiting, decreased appetite, dyspepsia, diarrhea, and stomach pain. More severe side effects can include recurrent fever, changes to your heartbeat, allergic reactions, gastroparesis, stomach paralysis, intestinal obstructions, and persistent vomiting requiring medical attention.
What are the allegations against Eli Lilly regarding Zepbound?
Lawsuits against Eli Lilly claim the drug manufacturer didn’t adequately warn consumers about the medication’s severe potential side effects like stomach paralysis and intestinal blockages.
What is the eligibility criteria to file a Zepbound lawsuit?
To be eligible for a Zepbound lawsuit, claimants must have used Zepbound and developed a related, severe illness that required medical attention. Proof of these factors is also required.
What evidence is needed to file a Zepbound lawsuit?
Evidence for a Zepbound lawsuit may include doctor’s notes, medical records, prescription history, medical bills, expert testimonies, appointment history, and other proof of a serious health problem connected to taking the medication.
How can I file a Zepbound lawsuit?
Individuals must gather the appropriate evidence and schedule an initial consultation with an experienced attorney.
What are the average settlement amounts for Zepbound lawsuits?
Zepbound settlements could range from $400,000 to $700,000. However, actual payouts will vary from case to case.
What factors influence settlement values for Zepbound lawsuits?
Factors that could influence Zepbound payout amounts include the severity of diagnosis, extent of damages, amount of evidence, and strength of correlation between taking the drug and experiencing the noted health problems.