Side effects of Zicam Nasal Gel and Nasal Swabs, marketed as an over-the-counter cold remedy, have been associated with the loss of sense of smell and taste, which can be an extremely devastating injury. In June 2009, the FDA required that three Zicam Cold Remedy products be pulled from the market due to reports of more than 130 users losing their sense of smell.
STATUS OF ZICAM LAWSUITS: Hundreds of Zicam lawsuits have been filed on behalf of individuals who lost their sense of taste or smell, and lawyers are continuing to review potential claims.
MANUFACTURER: Matrixx Initiatives
OVERVIEW: Zicam is an over-the-counter cold remedy that is used to reduce the severity and duration of the common cold when taken at the first sign of illness.
Although many different products are marketed under the Zicam name, problems with loss of the sense of smell or taste have been specifically associated with Nasal Gel applied by swabs or spray, such as:
- Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Gel
- Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Swabs
- Zicam Cold Remedy Swabs, Kids Size
ZICAM SIDE EFFECTS: The Zicam problems appear to be linked to the presence of zinc gluconate, which can damage nerves in the nasal cavity. This can leave consumers with an impaired ability to smell or taste certain foods, which can occur after only one use and may be permanent.
In addition to the impact these problems have on a consumer’s quality of life, loss of sense of smell from Zicam is also a potentially life-threatening side effect, as it may prevent people from detecting dangerous conditions, such as gas leaks or fires.
In June 2009, the FDA issued a warning advising consumers not to use Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Gel, Nasal Swabs and Kids Size Swabs, after receiving at least 130 reports of people losing their sense of smell. Although the FDA did not call their action a Zicam recall, since the homeopathic product was never formally approved, the manufacturer was told that they must submit safety and effectiveness data for review before they may market the products again.
ZICAM ANOSMIA – LOSS OF SMELL: The condition that may be caused by Zicam is known as anosmia, which is an inability to perceive smells. The condition can be long-lasting or permament.
Victims may suffer significant quality of life issues, such as finding food less appetizing, the loss of libido and loss of smell memory. Smell is often consider the human sense linked most strongly to memory.