In 1990, Procter & Gamble (PG) added zinc to its denture cream product Fixodent. Although a small amount of the mineral zinc is necessary for a healthy diet, zinc is toxic when ingested in large amounts and can lead to copper deficiency, which in turn can cause, among other things, peripheral neuropathy.
By 2005, the FDA reported adverse events due to zinc poisoning due to the denture cream product Poligrip, which has subsequently led to lawsuits and further studies confirming the connection.
Facts about Denture Cream:
- In 2008, researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center published finding in Neurology.
- They found a number of patients who used denture cream to have neuropathy symptoms and other neurological symptoms typical of copper depletion and zinc poisoning, which may be caused by denture cream.
- The problem can be particularly acute for people who use a lot of denture cream, such as people who have poorly fitting dentures.
- Common symptoms include unexplained weakness, numbness, and loss of sensation. Many patients are unaware that they are suffering from zinc poisoning.
- On February 18, 2010, GlaxoSmithKline PLC (GSK) announced that they were discontinuing the use of zinc in the Poligrip line of denture creams.
- According to a Bloomberg News report from May 2011, GlaxoSmithKline PLC (GSK) has paid at least $120 million to resolve claims that some of its Poligrip products have caused neurological disorders because the denture cream contains zinc.
- The report also notes that GSK had resolved more than 100 lawsuits over the previous nine months alleging it failed to warn consumers about Poligrip’s zinc-related health risks. The average settlement was around $1 million or more.
- GSK noted this year in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing it had “reached agreements in principle to settle the vast majority of the current cases.”
If you have used or are using Denture Cream and have suffered from zinc poisoning or suffer from severe neuropathy, find out how Johnson//Becker PLLC can help you. Fill out our case review form here on our website and submit it for a free consultation.