Survivors and women battling breast cancer often cope with the damaging effects of chemotherapy medications. While most chemotherapy side effects go away after the treatment is finished, many patients who were prescribed the chemotherapy drug Taxotere were devastated to discover that the drug caused permanent baldness, or alopecia. Despite knowledge of the potential for alopecia, Taxotere’s manufacturer failed to warn patients and doctors of the risks.
At The Lawrence Firm, PSC, we represent clients who have suffered disfiguring side effects of dangerous drugs, including those suffering side effects from Taxotere. Our Dayton medical malpractice attorneys understand the difficulties facing victims of drugs. We will treat you with compassion and understanding, and we will use all of our available resources to obtain the best compensation award possible.
Dangerous Side Effects from Taxotere
Taxotere was approved by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) to treat a number of cancers, including breast cancer, in 1996. Taxotere’s manufacturer, Sanofi, sponsored a study of the drug that revealed that 9.2% of women who used the drug suffered permanent alopecia. Despite discovering this risk and even warning patients and doctors in other countries, Sanofi continued to market the drug without warning doctors and patients in the United States. In fact, the risk of permanent baldness wasn’t disclosed to patients in the U.S. until 2015, nearly 20 years after it was approved by the FDA.
Taxotere was also marketed as being more effective than other chemotherapy drugs despite studies showing that it was actually less effective in achieving disease-free and overall survival in women. Even though Sanofi knew that Taxotere was less effective and more toxic than competitor drugs, Taxotere’s manufacturer continued to market it as a superior drug and did not disclose the risk of alopecia. This false marketing and negligence resulted in traumatic experiences for thousands of breast cancer patients and survivors.
Lawsuits Involving Taxotere
Thousands of breast cancer patients and survivors affected by Taxotere’s toxic side effects have filed lawsuits against its manufacturer, Sanofi. In October 2016, the lawsuits were consolidated under MDL No. 2740 IN RE: Taxotere (Docetaxel) Products Liability Litigation in the Eastern District of Louisiana, with an initial 33 lawsuits from across the country. The goal of multidistrict litigation is to streamline the court proceedings of similar cases but allow each plaintiff to maintain an individual case. This means that although your case might be coordinated with other individual Taxotere claims for pretrial purposes, you will be compensated based on your unique legal damages if successful. Within about a year of consolidation, the number of lawsuits has grown to over 1,000. At this time, the first trials are scheduled for January 2019.