Woman sues over damage from Poligrip
Thursday, May 06, 2010
By Pohla Smith, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Terri Charpentier, 41, a mother of two from the Butler area, today sued GlaxoSmithKline in Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas, claiming harmful levels of zinc in Glaxo's Super Poligrip denture cream led to a nerve disorder that forced her to resign her clerical job and left her unable to drive or to walk without a walker or a cane.
Mrs. Charpentier alleges that the zinc level led to a copper deficiency, which in turn led to a neuropathy that for a while forced her to use a wheelchair.
GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare, headquartered in Moon, is one of the defendants and the reason the suit was filed here, said Robert N. Peirce, III, one of Mrs. Charpentier's attorneys. The suit also names other GlaxoSmithKline entities, Mr. Peirce said.
Similar suits have been filed across the country, and the internet shows law firms actively seeking litigants from among users of zinc-containing denture adhesives.
The link between zinc-containing denture adhesives and neuropathy has been reported in medical journals since 2008.
GlaxoSmithKline removed its product from retail shelves in February 2010 and at that issued a consumer advisory warning against "long-term, excessive use" of Super Poligrip.
("long-term, excessive use"? What the hell is that supposed to mean? Just use it until your teeth grow back?)