A St. Clair County woman has filed suit against the makers of a homeopathic cold medicine, alleging she lost her sense of taste and smell after taking the drug.

Cherie MacDonald claims she purchased and used defendant Zicam in November and December 2008 in an attempt to treat her cold symptoms, but the medication caused her to permanently lose her sense of taste and smell.

MacDonald claims she never would have experienced the disability had Zicam manufacturer Matrixx Initiatives properly warned her of the dangers of its nasal products.

Matrixx allegedly was fully aware of the hazards as the company entered into a multi-million dollar settlement on Jan. 19, 2006, with hundreds who also lost their taste and smell, according to MacDonald's complaint filed July 9 in St. Clair County Circuit Court.

It was only after the FDA released a notice in 2009 advising customers to stop using Zicam products that Matrixx recalled the medicine, the suit states.

In her 10-count complaint, MacDonald is seeking a judgment of more than $500,000, plus costs, pre- and post-judgment interest, attorneys' fees and other relief the court deems just.

She will be represented by J. Michael Weilmuenster, Stephen R. Wigginton and Frederick W. Keck of Weilmuenster and Wigginton.

Wigginton was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois on Aug. 5.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-352.

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