When facing physical, emotional, and financial damages as the result of using a defective drug, legal action may be necessary. Naturally, however, you may have multiple questions such as: What do I do next? What sort of lawsuit do I have on my hands? What’s the difference between a personal claim and a class action suit?
Your Texas pharmaceutical liability attorneys here at Hotze Runkle PLLC would like to inform you about the legal options you may have when it comes to filing a defective drug claim – especially if you have been affected by Taxotere.
If you are wondering whether to file an individual claim or if you should join a class action lawsuit, then consider the following information.
What is an individual pharmaceutical liability lawsuit?
In an individual lawsuit, you – as a single plaintiff – would seek to hold the company (or companies) responsible for causing your injuries. If you decide to file an individual lawsuit, then all compensation would go to you, aside from lawyer fees. This is important to note, as in class action lawsuits, the compensation recovered is split among all plaintiffs.
Compensation in this type of claim can include recovery for the following types of damages:
- Medical costs (past and present)
- Lost income (past and present)
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of quality of life
- Related costs due to illness or recovery
Additionally, if multiple individuals are filing multiple claims, those who file earliest are likely to secure more compensation for their troubles.
What are class action lawsuits?
Class action lawsuits can include dozens to thousands of individuals all joining together to file claims against a company or organization that has wronged them. Depending on the circumstances of your situation, it may benefit you to join a class action lawsuit against the makers of Taxotere versus going at it alone.
Advantages of participating in a class action lawsuit can include:
- It is generally financially easier for a plaintiff to join a class action lawsuit versus filing their own claim. The cost of quality legal counsel is essentially split by all participating parties, thus making it more affordable.
- Class action lawsuits are widely considered a good thing for the court system. If every individual who had been wronged in a class action filed a separate lawsuit, the large number of actions would drag court schedules into a quagmire, causing horrendous problems for the courts and for plaintiffs trying to get a trial date and resolution.
- Resources are shared in a class action lawsuit, which allows the litigation process to function much more efficiently. Plus, with information being readily shared, plaintiffs can benefit from new data or proof showing how they have been harmed.
- In certain situations, class action lawsuits extend the statutes of limitations, giving you more time to act.
- In situations where there are a finite amount of assets for recovery, a class action suit guarantees that the recovery would be divided evenly among all people injured.
Dependable Texas Taxotere Lawsuit Attorneys
If you have suffered from permanent tearing as a result of undergoing chemotherapy treatment, know that you do have options. Our Texas Taxotere lawsuit attorneys can help you determine what your legal options are and whether that means filing an individual claim or filing as part of a class-action lawsuit.
If you suffer from excessive tearing as a result of Taxotere treatment, contact the Taxotere injury attorneys of Hotze Runkle PLLC today at (877) 919-0830.
Every mesothelioma case comes with its own unique details, making every lawsuit different. Not every lawyer is capable of handling the varying types of mesothelioma lawsuits that could apply to your situation.
That is why it is so important to begin the process of finding the right mesothelioma lawyer immediately after you have been diagnosed. There are statutes of limitations that can affect your ability to seek the compensation you deserve if you wait to long for legal protection.
Every mesothelioma case is unique, and because of this, could be handled individually or as part of a class action lawsuit. The experienced mesothelioma lawyers at Hotze Runkle PLLC will advise you about which type is best for you.
Types of Mesothelioma Lawsuits
Every mesothelioma case is unique, and because of this, could be handled individually or as part of a class action lawsuit. The experienced mesothelioma lawyers at Hotze Runkle PLLC will advise you about which type is best for you.
The different types include:
Personal Injury Lawsuit
A personal injury lawsuit is filed after an individual is diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer. Personal injury lawsuits seek to hold the company or companies responsible for exposing the individual to asbestos. If this type of lawsuit is won, it would result in compensation for lost income (due to the injury), any medical care the patient received and will need, pain and suffering, and any related costs due to illness or recovery.
Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Wrongful death lawsuits are filed by a surviving family member on behalf of the decedent. Like a personal injury lawsuit, a wrongful death lawsuit is filed against the company or companies that are responsible for the asbestos exposure that led to the illness and death.
Family members can receive compensation for damages including but not limited to: outstanding medical bills, funeral costs, loss of benefits to the family from the relationship with the decedent, loss of potential income, pain and suffering, and other related losses.
Class Action Lawsuits
A class action lawsuit is one lawsuit filed by a group of people (referred to as a class) who may be suffering from similar damages caused by the same company/companies. In a class action lawsuit, the representing attorney will choose one individual case to be the sole representative of the entire group.
If your class action lawsuit is rejected, then all the cases within the class will still be able to move forward individually. If it is granted, then identifying members of the class action suit begins. Most class action lawsuits settle before going to court, and if compensation is won, then the damages are split between the members of the class.
Multidistrict litigation, also known as MDL, allows individuals to file a claim under a streamlined process to allow the courts to handle more cases without the fear of back logging. A panel of several judges will determine whether they will consolidate these cases.
Benefits of Veterans
Veterans are able to file a claim with the VA for compensation for any injuries or illnesses that occurred as a result of their military service. Those that served in the U.S. military are at a greater risk of developing mesothelioma because of the asbestos used in military vessels, barracks, pipe coverings, and other tools or machinery. Individuals who were in the U.S. Navy are at the most risk because of their work in shipyards.
If you or someone you love is suffering from mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure, contact Hotze Runkle PLLC today at (877) 919-0830 for a free consultation. Our mesothelioma lawyers are ready to fight for you.
The product liability lawyers at Hotze Runkle PLLC are leading the way when it comes to fighting for the rights of breast cancer patients and survivors who have been hurt by pharmaceutical companies and drug manufacturers. The use of certain chemotherapy drugs has been shown to cause excessive tearing and permanent closure of a patient’s tear ducts. These issues, in turn, cause other eye-related complications that can require surgery as well as lead to significant amounts of pain.
We know that undergoing chemotherapy is a tough experience and having to deal with unexpected health complications can really place a toll on you. That’s why our dedicated team of national product liability lawyers are ready to walk you through this complicated process.
We are eager to provide you with as much information as possible to ensure that you understand everything that is going on should you choose to file a lawsuit. Please read through the following pharmaceutical lawsuit FAQs and feel free to contact us at (877) 919-0830 if you have any additional questions.
What is a product liability claim?
Product liability refers to the legal responsibility of a manufacturer or vendor to sell a safe product and their liability if the product causes harm. In cases where drugs cause unexpected damages, the victim who has suffered as result of using the product may have a product liability claim.
These types of claims generally fall into three categories:
- Defective Manufacture: When a product becomes faulty because of the manufacturing process.
- Defective Design: This occurs when the original design of the product had faults.
- Failure to Warn: This can include inadequate warnings about the product’s side effects to both doctors and/or patients, improper marketing for uses the product was not designed for, and failing to provide adequate instructions on how to use a particular drug or device.
How do I know if I have a case?
In order to file a lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company or manufacturer, you have to have suffered some type of injury or medical complication as a result of using the defective drug.
In order to successfully win your case, our national litigation team will prove that you were injured as a result of the defective chemotherapy drug, the medication was defective in some specific way, and that the manufacturer failed to warn of the potential for injury.
Why do I need a lawyer?
Lawsuits over defective drugs can be very complicated and require expert witnesses, dozens if not hundreds of hours of research, as well as keen insight into product liability and other areas of law. Without the guidance and legal protection of a quality lawyer, it can be nearly impossible for you to recover compensation for your medical bills and other damages.
It is also important to choose an experienced product liability attorney with a solid track record and one willing to take your case to trial. At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we have handled many drug and medical device liability lawsuits.
What are some of the side effects of these chemotherapy drugs?
Chemotherapy drugs affect patients in a myriad of ways causing side effects such as:
- Temporary hair loss
- Muscle or joint pain
- Severe headaches
- Vision changes
- Chest pain
And much more.
At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we are focused on helping those patients who have suffered from unexpected side effects that include excessive tearing (also known as epiphora), the blockage of tears ducts, or who have had to undergo surgery to allow tears to bypass the blocked duct and work correctly.
What chemotherapy drugs are causing these issues?
At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we have been closely monitoring chemotherapy drugs linked to excessive tearing and have noted one specific drug that appears to be the primary source of issues – Taxotere (docetaxel).
There are, however, a number of additional chemotherapy drugs that we are also keeping an eye on including:
- Xeloda (capecitabine)
- Adriamycin (doxorubicin)
Who is held liable in a product liability lawsuit (who would I sue)?
There may be multiple parties responsible for your product liability claim including those involved in the creation, marketing, or distribution of the product.
Your committed national litigation team at Hotze Runkle PLLC will help to uncover specifically who is responsible for your pain and suffering, and we will bring them to justice.
How much is my case worth?
Recovery results will vary from patient to patient and will depend on various factors including:
- The product that caused the injury
- The injuries you suffered as a result of taking the drug
- The amount of medical bills you owe and lost wages
- Any future medical bills and how the damages have affected your ability to work
Some of the types of compensation you may be eligible to receive include but are not limited to:
- Economic damages. This can include medical bills, lost income, and more.
- Non-economic damage. This refers to any physical, mental, or emotional damages suffered by the victim and caused by the responsible party (i.e. the pharmaceutical company). The jury defines the amount.
- Punitive damage. This type of compensation is only awarded if it is possible to prove malice, fraud, or gross negligence. This would be an additional economic punishment to the company or manufacturer due to their reckless behavior.
Trust in our dedicated team to fight for every penny that you deserve.
What do I need to provide my lawyer with?
In order to adequately develop your claim, you will need to provide your lawyer with a number of documents that relate to your case including:
- Medical bills
- Receipts for any prescribed medications including those that may have caused your injury
- Medical records (hospital stays, doctor visits, therapy treatment plan, x-rays, MRIs, etc.)
- Photo/video related to your injury
- Any documentation you recorded
- Any proof of lost wages including pay stubs and bank statements
Is there a time limit to filing a lawsuit?
There are certain time limitations (known as statute of limitations) that dictate how long you have to file a claim after you have been injured. The statute of limitations varies from state to state and is dependent on the type of lawsuit being filed.
In the state of Texas, individuals have two years to file a pharmaceutical lawsuit. Because it can be difficult for the average citizen to understand when exactly the starting point began, it is essential to seek out the guidance of a qualified lawyer.
Can I still file a claim even if the drug was approved by the FDA?
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for regulating and overseeing the development of prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, medical devices, and other medical products. While the organization attempts to protect the public to the best of its ability, at times drugs are sometimes approved because of falsified tests and results.
If it is found that the product or medication (chemotherapy drugs in this instance) causes unexpected and serious side effects, then users may have the ability to file a lawsuit.
How long will the lawsuit take to wrap up?
The truth is that pharmaceutical lawsuits can be complicated and thus require a substantial amount of time to resolve – some lawsuits can take years to conclude. However, some defendants may be willing to negotiate a settlement without going to court, which can reduce the time.
Talk with our product liability attorneys at Hotze Runkle PLLC to learn more about the specifics of your specific case and how long the process could take to complete.
Will I have to testify?
Some lawsuits are settled before the case ever goes to trial and in those instances, you will not have to testify. However, if the case does go to court, you will likely have to testify.
If you or a loved one has taken Taxotere or any another chemotherapy drug and are now struggling with eye-related complications, contact the qualified and experienced product liability lawyers at Hotze Runkle PLLC today. We are ready to answer any questions you may have.
Your product liability lawyers at Hotze Runkle PLLC have been following the news regarding chemotherapy drugs that cause excessive tearing. Several drugs used during the course of chemotherapy treatment have been shown to cause permanent closure of a patient’s tear ducts. This, in turn, has lead to patient’s developing a number of eye-related complications such as:
- Severe cases of excessive tearing (epiphora)
- Pain and swelling inside the corner of the eye
- Blurred vision
- Mucus or pus build up and discharge
One of these drugs, known as Taxotere, which is manufactured by the pharmaceutical company, Sanofi, is already facing a mounting number of lawsuits from breast cancer patients and survivors who are dealing with other severe side effects. Breast cancer patients have launched a legal attack on the negligent company claiming they failed to effectively notify users of how severe these side effects could be.
While the national litigation team at Hotze Runkle PLLC is focusing primarily on helping victims of excessive tearing and permanent tear duct closure, we believe that is important to highlight that this is not the first time the manufacturer of Taxotere has wrongly hurt users.
Why People are Filing Taxotere Lawsuits
There are currently over 8,000 pending lawsuits against Taxotere for false marketing and downplaying the severity of its side effects.
One of the most drastic side effects cancer patients have faced has been permanent hair loss. While hair loss is a commonly noted side effect of chemotherapy, in the case of breast cancer patients taking Taxotere, there was an increased risk of chemotherapy-induced alopecia – or permanent hair loss. For most patients, hair usually begins to grow back after 3 to 6 months but for some Taxotere users, this permanent loss of hair has lead to truly traumatic experiences.
Having to deal with the physical and psychological pain and suffering of chemotherapy treatment is challenging enough. The breast cancer survivors who have to deal with alopecia have suffered intense damage to their quality of life. Studies have shown that cancer survivors dealing with alopecia often face higher rates of anxiety, poor body image, and lowered self-esteem.
Sadly, these psychological effects make it difficult for survivors to transition back into their everyday lives – and even work.
Warnings about the risk of alopecia were not specified until 2015, nearly 20 years after the chemotherapy drug had been in the market. Unbelievably, the manufacturer knew as early as 1998, when they funded a study that confirmed a potential for permanent hair loss.
Still, the pharmaceutical company failed to warn patients about the findings. In fact, the company marketed the drugs as a safer, more effective alternative to other chemotherapy drugs in the United States. Even with studies and warnings coming in from foreign countries, Sanofi continued to downplay the effects and essentially ignore studies that showed otherwise.
This situation clearly highlights the extent to which pharmaceutical manufacturers such as Sanofi are willing to go to make a profit off the pain of others.
Taxotere and Other Chemotherapy Drugs Under Scrutiny Again
Taxotere already has a history of leaving breast cancer patients struggling with permanent cases of hair loss, and yet the drug continues to be heavily recommended and used. Now, Taxotere and other chemotherapy drugs are being associated with excessive tearing and permanent tear duct closure.
But you don’t have to quietly accept your situation.
The product liability attorneys of Hotze Runkle PLLC are here to make sure that the negligence of Sanofi does not go unpunished. With years of experience in product liability representation, trust in our ability to fight for your civil justice.
Contact our law offices today at (877) 919-0830 to schedule a consultation. At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we don’t demand your trust, we earn it.
Hurricane Harvey wasn’t the only event that affected Texas citizens this past week.
Recently, Texas legislators passed House Bill 1774, a bill that will change how insurance companies can be held accountable for late payments and underpaid or wrongfully denied claims.
At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we fight tirelessly to make sure insurance companies hear your voice.
In order to rein in greedy insurance companies from taking advantage of those affected by Hurricane Harvey, we gathered up all the information you need to know to stay informed about this particular law and how it will affect you.#HurricaneHarvey dumped 50” of rain in TX = one yr’s worth of rainfall in just a wk. #HotzeRunkle Click To Tweet
What HB1774 Is Designed To Do
House Bill 1774 is purported to provide protection to both insurers and policyholders by limiting lawsuit abuses.
When you file a claim in good faith, insurance companies are supposed to pay out claims in a timely manner. Giving back what is rightfully owed to the insured.
Sometimes it isn’t that easy and insurance companies act in bad faith. Denying, delaying, or underpaying legitimate claims.
While the new law may seem like a compromise that meets both governmental and public needs, what it really does is punish policyholders who cannot make the claim in a timely manner – like the millions of Texans who have been affected by Hurricane Harvey.
How House Bill 1774 Punishes Policyholders
Currently, the law enforces homeowner insurance companies to pay the full 18% in interest for late payment. But come September 1, that requirement is going to change.
The bill reduces interest payable to homeowners from 18% down to 10% if the homeowner took too long in filing a claim.
In the long run, it dampens the accountability held with homeowner’s insurance companies that take too long.
HB1774 also reduces the amount of attorney fees that homeowners can recover if they do not accurately estimate the amount of damages incurred to their home. The estimate must be within 80% when they file a suit against an insurer.
Not only do the new measures make it difficult for homeowners to demand timely payment from insurance companies, it will make it harder to find lawyers willing to take these cases.More than 30,000 people forced from their #homes by flooding #HurricaneHarvey #HotzeRunkle Click To Tweet
What You Can Do Now
With the storm still ravaging parts of Texas and Louisiana, we understand that filing an insurance claim is the least of your concerns.
However, if you do not act before August 31st, you won’t be able to take advantage of the law as it is today. Doing so after September 1st will subject you to the changes of the new law.
Here is what you can do to ensure you are getting what you were promised:
- Take photos of the damages your home has received.
- Keep any receipts for home repair.
- Review your insurance policy.
- File a claim in writing (preferably by e-mail as time is a factor).
- Advise the insurance company of the facts relating to the claim.
- Hire a lawyer right away.
It is imperative to file a claim in writing with the date and time visible. Keep a copy of that document for your records.
If the claim was made on or before August 31, and if the insurance company is taking too long to make good on their promises, or trying to underpay or deny your legitimate claim, hiring a lawyer would be the next appropriate action to take.
Were You Affected By Hurricane Harvey? Do You Feel Your Insurance Company Is Taking Advantage Of You? Do Not Wait To Make A Claim With Your Insurance Company. Call Hotze Runkle PLLC today at (877) 919-0830!
Our thoughts go out to all of those that were affected by Hurricane Harvey.
Call Hotze Runkle PLLC today at (877) 919-0830 for consultation and together we will hold greedy insurance companies accountable.
There has been increased momentum in the Taxotere lawsuits that are currently undergoing discovery and various pretrial steps in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana.
Altogether, there are now over 1,100 suits filed by breast cancer patients who have experienced permanent alopecia (hair loss) as a result of taking the chemotherapy drug Taxotere.Over 1000 lawsuits filed against chemotherapy drug #Taxotere have been filed #HotzeRunkle #LawTeam Click To Tweet
One factor that has contributed to this high number of cases is that lawsuits involving both Taxotere (docetaxel) and its generic versions are included in the consolidated litigation.
Hotze Runkle PLLC recognizes the importance of the path these proceedings will take. It is vital to future cases and to the lives of affected patients that the manufacturer of Taxotere, Sanofi-Aventis, be required to answer for the suffering they have caused.
Looking Back as Things Move Forward
There is a monthly status conference scheduled for July 7th, which should provide more concrete dates for the trials moving forward.
Perhaps the most promising news that has come out of pretrial developments is that a request by Sanofi-Aventis lawyers to have the suits litigated on an individual basis was not approved.
The request came in spite of years of data showing a repeated pattern of Sanofi-Aventis ignoring the potential of long-term hair loss in patients treated with Taxotere.
In 2012, in the Annals of Oncology, a study was done on 20 patients who were treated with Taxotere during their therapy. Every patient in the study experienced a lasting alopecia.
While that may be an extreme example, a study conducted by Sanofi itself showed the same risks for Taxotere users as far back as the late 1990s.
This study, known as GEICAM 9805, yielded results that showed nine percent of patients who were given Taxotere were afflicted with hair loss that lasted ten years or more.
Those chronic side effects were still not enough for Sanofi-Aventis to provide more than a vague warning concerning hair loss on Taxotere packaging.
In some cases, the alopecia experienced by patients in this study was not restricted to just the scalp. The loss of eyebrows was another long-term consequence for at least one woman in Canada.#Alopecia (hair loss) can affect more than just the #scalp. #HotzeRunkle #Facts Click To Tweet
One case that comes up most often is the lawsuit filed by Ami Dodson.
A former breast cancer patient from California who used the drug during her chemotherapy treatment has made a number of allegations against the defendants, concerning events that go as far back as 1996 – over 20 years ago.
The fact that the timeline of her claims stretches back to this year is no accident. It was in 1996 that docetaxel was first approved by the FDA for use in breast cancer therapy.
Dodson was one of the earliest to voice opposition to Sanofi’s marketing of Taxotere as more effective and less toxic in comparison to other chemotherapy drugs. Her suit is something of a template case illustrating how the potential side effects of Taxotere have resulted in lasting, chronic hair loss.
Mrs. Dodson’s case, as well as all those currently pending in Louisiana, should serve as a reminder to all those affected by Taxotere that they don’t have to remain silent.
The national litigation team of Hotze Runkle PLLC is here to help you figure out the legal rights and options that you have.
You can fight back against the negligence and indifference of Sanofi-Aventis and get justice for your troubles.
The time to act is now. Contact our national litigation team today at 512-476-7771 and let us go to work for you. We want to bring you the peace of mind you need to move forward in life.
There are side effects that breast cancer patients can expect when undergoing chemotherapy, with hair loss being among the most common.
One thing that eases the strain of these treatments and their byproducts is the knowledge that the effects are temporary and that patients can expect a return to normalcy after completing them.
Unfortunately, for many breast cancer patients who were treated with the chemotherapy drug Taxotere, the hard times have continued. Many patients have completed treatment only to find that they have suffered from permanent hair loss, or also known as alopecia.
Lawsuits have begun to emerge, revealing that the manufacturer of this drug did not sufficiently warn patients or doctors about the risk of this side effect.
At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we understand that dealing with any type of cancer treatment is difficult enough and no one should have to face continued suffering after the treatment has been completed. Taxotere creator Sanofi-Aventis needs to be held accountable for their negligence.
Our team of experienced attorneys at Hotze Runkle PLLC want to provide you valuable information so that you can be better informed about the current situation should you find yourself affected by the drug.
Taxotere Allegations In-Depth
There are now more than 1,000 lawsuits undergoing pretrial coordination in the Eastern District of Louisiana centered around allegations that Taxotere caused autoimmune skin disease alopecia in breast cancer patients.
Plaintiffs charge that the drug, which was approved by the FDA in 1996, comes with a higher risk of permanent alopecia when compared to other equally effective chemotherapy drugs. One main point of contention for plaintiffs is that this information was not included on labeling for Taxotere until 2015.
This becomes even more damning for the defendants, Sanofi-Aventis, because regulators and patients in Europe were made aware of this potential side effect a decade earlier, in 2005.
Furthermore, Canadian labels were changed in 2012 to inform patients and other parties there.
It was only in the U.S. that Taxotere came with a vague note that “hair usually grows back” concerning any possible permanent hair loss.
Orders Addressing Discovery and Bellwether Trials
On May 15, a pretrial order instructed both plaintiffs and defendant to propose an order for a discovery schedule as well as dates for bellwether trials by May 26th.
Bellwether trials are a common feature of situations like this where so many lawsuits are directed against a single defendant. The trials will usually involve lawsuits that are representative of the majority of the other cases.
This is done to help all parties involved see whether there is strength behind a plaintiff’s claims. The results can be a good predictor of how future, related trials might be decided by juries.
A May 18th Case Management Order set a number of important deadlines concerning Personal Jurisdiction Discovery:
- By May 26, plaintiffs had to serve personal jurisdictional discovery in response to Sanofi’s motion to dismiss.
- Before June 2, 2017, the two sides would meet again and discuss any discovery that had been served.
- As of June 30, 2017, the defendants would respond and cite objections to discovery.
Another Case Management Order, on the 23rd of May, also addressed discovery. This order stated that any foreign merits discovery related to French Sanofi entities would also be served on the 26th of the month.
The deadlines currently set concerning discovery make it likely that the whole process will last until the early stages of Autumn. In this scenario, the first bellwether trials would likely begin in either November or December of this year.
It is important that everyone who has been affected by Taxotere, whether involved in a similar lawsuit or not, follow the developments around these cases.
Hotze Runkle PLLC is the support you need if you have been harmed as a result of taking Taxotere.
If you have been affected by Taxotere and are unsure about what your legal options are, contact Hotze Runkle PLLC today at (877) 919-0830. Our national litigation team can provide you with the guidance you need to sort through these difficult times.
Don’t face the shadow of Taxotere alone. Our attorneys have the experience you can trust to get the justice and compensation you deserve.
A woman bald from a health problem putting on makeup in the mirror.
Although this treatment has presented itself as a superior option to other chemotherapy drugs such as Taxol, which offers similar results without a greatly increased risk of permanent hair loss, patients are having to deal with the consequences of going through Taxotere treatment without full awareness of its side effects.
Your national litigation firm, Hotze Runkle PLLC, wants to ensure that you are protected from the immoral and illegal actions of major pharmaceutical companies, like Taxotere maker Sanofi-Aventis, who try to take advantage of innocent people.
A Brief History of Taxotere
Developed and marketed by the French pharmaceutical company Sanofi-Aventis, Taxotere was first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1996. While the drug has been prescribed for a number of cancers including non-small cell lung cancer, advanced stomach cancer, head and neck cancer, and metastatic prostate cancer, it has primarily been used as a treatment plan for breast cancer.
According to BreastCancer.Org, as of 2017, there were more than 3.1 million women with a history of breast cancer in the United States. The vast majority of these women, estimated at around 75%, were prescribed Taxotere as a part of their treatment plan.
Because the treatment plan for Taxotere calls for chemotherapy sessions only once every three weeks, in comparison to other drugs that require treatment sessions weekly, the drug was marketed as more effective and less time consuming – an attractive option to patients.
Taxotere has made manufacturer Sanofi-Aventis billions of dollars in profit.
Litigation Issues Against Taxotere
Lawsuits have emerged against Sanofi-Aventis accusing the pharmaceutical company of deliberately failing to disclose the risk of permanent hair loss in order to increase sales.
Various studies, some sponsored by Sanofi itself and others conducted by third party institutions, revealed that a higher percentage of women were likely to suffer permanent hair loss (alopecia) in comparison to other chemotherapy drugs such as Taxol.
This means that the company was fully aware of the life damaging risk of its drug, yet purposely avoided disclosing the dangers to patients.
Other claims against Sanofi include:
- Selling the drug without proper testing.
- Failing to warn healthcare providers.
- Misleading patients through advertisements.
- Falsely assuring patients of returning hair growth.
- Failing to provide adequate warnings on packaging.
Many of these allegations are specific to patients in the United States, as the drug was marketed in other countries with warnings about the potential for permanent hair loss. It was not until 2015 that FDA finally issued a warning in the United States about the potential risks associated with the drug. Prior to the FDA warning, Sanofi suggested that patient’s hair would regrow after treatment.
Additionally, studies suggest that Taxotere is less effective than another chemotherapy drug – Taxol. Evidence found shows that over 89% of women who received Taxol had a higher survival rate than those undergoing treatment with Taxotere.
Additional Chemotherapy and Alopecia Side Effects
Because of the strength of chemotherapy drugs within the human body, many adverse side effects are known to occur in certain patients including:
- Loss of appetite
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fatigue and drowsiness
- Pain at injection site
- Hair loss
- Mouth or throat sores
- Numbness in fingers and toes
While hair loss does commonly occur with chemotherapy treatment, there are a number of symptoms that you should be aware of that may suggest you are being affected by alopecia:
- Loss of hair on entire body
- Loss of eyebrow and eyelash hair
As if having to deal with breast cancer isn’t painful enough, Sanofi-Aventis has subjected women to an on-going, life-changing battle.
The impact of hair loss can greatly affect the quality of life, body image, social functioning, and self-esteem of women who have undergone chemotherapy. Even more so, these unfortunate women must also suffer the loss of or inability to work, which can have dire economic effects in their lives.
If you or a loved one has suffered through the painful and serious side effects of Taxotere, do not hesitate to contact the law offices of Hotze Runkle PLLC today at (877) 919-0830.
Our reliable national litigation team at Hotze Runkle PLLC are here to guide and support the women and cancer patient survivors who have been injured by Taxotere.
Your situation may mean you are entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering.