When it comes to protecting your health, you have little option but to place your trust in doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and the numerous companies that manufacture medical-related products. In this post, our Houston Actemra Lawyer will discuss arthritis drug lawsuits surrounding the drug Actemra (tocilizumab) – lawsuits alleging that the manufacturer was negligent in their advertising and warning to patients.
Information about Actemra
In 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug Actemra for use in treating rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Manufactured by Genentech (a subsidiary of Roche), Actemra was advertised as being ground-breaking and “unique” in that it was not associated with the most severe or deadly side effects linked to many other RA medications. Not only was it advertised as being safer than many other RA medications, but the Actemra label included no warning at all about possible side effects common in RA drugs, such as:
- Heart Failure
- Heart Attack
- Lung Disease
- Gastrointestinal Perforations
These and other side effects are listed on the label of medications like Enbrel, Humira, and Remicade – all commonly used to treat RA symptoms. As a direct competitor, Actemra’s promise of lowered risk caused a strong reaction in the medical community and among patients looking for relief. Since approval, the FDA has reviewed Actemra for safety on several occasions, but approval was never pulled.
Research Shows Actemra More Dangerous than Other RA Drugs
In June 2017, national publication STAT conducted an investigation into Actemra after learning about numerous complaints of adverse side effects. STAT analyzed over 500,000 reports on arthritis drugs with results that have sent shockwaves across the medical and legal communities. Not only did the STAT investigation reveal adverse side effects among Actemra users, but it suggested that Actemra might be even more dangerous than other RA medications.
Since approval, the FDA has received 1,128 reports of patients dying while taking Actemra. There were also thousands of other complaints of adverse side effects. Unfortunately, the FDA cannot verify an exact cause of death, or establish whether the drug itself caused death, or if it was merely a bystander. In the majority of reports, the cause of death was listed as heart disease, stroke, or lung disease, with little additional information about what factors may have contributed to these disorders – such as Actemra.
With renewed interest in the safety and effectiveness of Actemra, the FDA has conducted additional reviews, but has not issued warnings to doctors and patients. Further, Roche claims there is not enough evidence to justify adding side effects to the Actemra label. This has resulted in Actemra continuing to be used in the treatment of patients with RA. Whether or not doctors are warning patients of the possible side effects is unknown, but it appears that Roche and Genentech are not budging on their labeling practices.
Not only is it bad business to advertise a dangerous product as safe, it can also be a violation of patient rights. Anyone taking Actemra who has suffered adverse side effects should contact Brown & Brothers to speak with our Actemra lawyer about their legal rights.
Actemra Lawyer Discusses Lawsuits
With over 700,000 U.S. patients and families affected by Actemra, attorneys across the country are investigating reports and complaints of harmful side effects or death among patients being treated with the drug. There are currently a variety of individual lawsuits, but there is the possibility of multi-district litigation (MDL), or cases being consolidated into a class action lawsuit.
Plaintiffs involved in these lawsuits state that, had they been warned about the possible side effects, they likely would have chosen a different medication or treatment plan. Patients feel lied to, taken advantage of, and harmed in more ways than one.
At Brown & Brothers, our Actemra lawyers are actively exploring claims that Roche and Genentech:
- Were negligent by failing to warn consumers about the dangers of the drug
- Were negligent by marketing a defective product
- Willfully misled hundreds of thousands of doctors and patients into believing Actemra was safer than competing medications
Not only is it important to hold drug manufacturers accountable for harm done to consumers, it is important to help consumers fight for their legal rights and the justice they deserve.
Contact Houston’s Actemra Lawyer to Learn More
If you or someone you love has suffered adverse side effects while taking Actemra, don’t wait to contact an Actemra lawyer to learn more about your legal rights. Every state has a statute to limitations, or a period of time that you have to take legal action. Act today to be certain you don’t miss the chance at getting compensation.
At Brown & Brothers, our team of attorneys is dedicated to aggressively defending your legal rights and finding the best course of action to get you the help you deserve. The team at Brown & Brothers has successfully litigated multiple cases involving defective or dangerous products, including medications. We work hard to help our clients get compensation for their injuries, financial losses, pain and suffering, and any other harm you may have suffered. Request your free case evaluation by completing our online form. One of our attorneys will be in contact as soon as possible.