Eight lawsuits have been selected for the testosterone bellwether trials set for 2017. The results of these cases could impact the over 6,000 pending lawsuits involving testosterone medications. The results of the lawsuits could have a substantial impact on drug manufacturers, physicians, and patients.
Dangers of Testosterone Replacement Products
FDA-approved testosterone replacement products net millions of dollars in profit for drug manufacturers. Some experts estimate the profits from the sale of these drugs to increase to $5 billion by December 2017. However, the benefits of testosterone replacement drugs may not outweigh the potential risks. In 2015, the FDA ordered drug makers to include warnings on the labels of testosterone replacement products to advise patients of the potential risk of heart attack and stroke. This was the result of a consumer group, Public Citizen, petitioning the FDA to place these black box warnings on the safety labels.
The Cases on Trial
U.S. District Judge Matthew Kennelley signed an order in August to include four stroke and heart attack claims and four blood clot claims for the bellwether trials. All eight cases allege that the maker of AndroGel was aware of the risk for cardiovascular issues but failed to warn doctors and patients. The cases were selected based on their ability to provide precedence for future testosterone replacement drug cases.
Benefits vs. Risks
Testosterone gel is a product that has been developed to help replace natural testosterone that a decreases naturally in men as they age. Some of the symptoms of low testosterone levels include fatigue, lethargy, and reduced libido. Doctors prescribe testosterone therapy to combat these symptoms. Some studies have revealed that patients received only moderate results from the therapy. The benefits were limited to only moderately improved libido with no improvements in energy or physical fitness.
The risk for heart attack increases when using testosterone replacement therapy and it can impact men of any age. Some unofficial studies show that men under the age of 65 have two to three times the risk of myocardial infarction when using the treatment over those who didn’t use the treatment. Once men reach the age of 65, the risk doubled for those without any history of heart disease. Another risk that may be associated with testosterone therapy is an increased risk for prostate cancer.
Some experts recommend foregoing the testosterone therapy until more information is available about the risks and side effects. If someone has taken testosterone therapy and suffered a heart attack, stroke or blood clot, he may be entitled to compensation for his injuries. As the bellwether trials unfold, their results could pave the way for other patients who have received this treatment to receive a settlement.
Contact a Louisiana Defective Drug Attorney
If you or your loved one have been injured by a defective drug, you need to seek the advice of legal counsel. Contact a Louisiana defective drug attorney to review your case and determine the next step. The defective drug attorneys of The Olinde Firm offer free case evaluations and free legal consultations. You can contact our office by calling (504) 587-1440 or 1-800-587-1889 for more information or to speak with an attorney.