Antibiotic Peripheral Neuropathy
Last Updated on May 1, 2020
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are no longer investigating this matter. The information here is for reference only. A list of open investigations and lawsuits can be viewed here.
At A Glance
- This Alert Affects:
- Individuals who developed nerve damage after taking a fluoroquinolone antibiotic.
- Which Antibiotics Are Considered Fluoroquinolones?
- Levaquin (levofloxacin), Cipro (ciprofloxacin), Avelox (moxifloxacin), Noroxin (norfloxacin), Floxin (ofloxacin) and Factive (gemifloxacin) all belong to the class of drugs known as fluoroquinolones. Fluoroquinolone antibiotics can be taken orally, injected or used topically and are often prescribed for lung, sinus, skin and urinary tract infections.
- What's Going On?
- It has been alleged that fluoroquinolone antibiotics can cause a serious type of nerve damage known as peripheral neuropathy, which can develop at any time during treatment and may be permanent. Manufacturers of these drugs have been accused of failing to adequately warn patients and doctors about this side effect.
- What Are the Symptoms of Nerve Damage?
- Numbness; pain; weakness; tingling or burning sensations; changes in sensation to touch, pain or temperature; and changes in sense of body position. Specifically, peripheral neuropathy produces these symptoms in the hands or feet, and may spread to the arms or legs.
- Johnson & Johnson, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Bayer Corp., Merck & Co., Daiichi Sankyo and LG Life Sciences
- Case Type:
- Mass Tort
Lawsuits are being filed on behalf of patients who took fluoroquinolone antibiotic drugs, such as Levaquin or Avelox, and developed a specific type of nerve damage known as peripheral neuropathy.
The lawsuits claim that patients and doctors were not adequately warned that nerve damage could occur at any point during antibiotic treatment and may be permanent. Patients are seeking compensation from the drugs’ manufacturers for medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.
If you or a loved one suffered nerve damage after taking a fluoroquinolone antibiotic, such as Levaquin or Cipro, you may be able to file a lawsuit.
Lawsuits: Levaquin, Avelox Are Defective, Can Cause Serious Nerve Damage
The manufacturers of several fluoroquinolone antibiotics are currently facing lawsuits alleging that their drugs are defective, dangerous and put patients at an increased risk of developing nerve damage.
"The companies failed to adequately warn patients about this side effect and continued to market their antibiotics as safe and effective."
In the lawsuits, plaintiffs claim that studies dating back to 1992 linked fluoroquinolone antibiotics to a serious type of nerve damage known as peripheral neuropathy. According to the plaintiffs, the makers of Levaquin (Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceuticals) and Avelox (Bayer Corp. and Merck & Co.) knew or should have known about multiple studies highlighting this risk; however, the companies failed to adequately warn patients about this side effect and continued to market their antibiotics as safe and effective , according to the suits. The suits also claim that the warnings for peripheral neuropathy failed to disclose that this medical condition could be irreversible and may develop just days after taking the drugs.
Is This a Class Action?
These lawsuits will not continue as a class action. Class actions are often reserved for instances in which a large number of people suffered minimal losses (e.g., the cost of purchasing a product that was falsely advertised) and filing individual lawsuits would not be financially viable. To learn more about why these lawsuits will not continue as a class action, click here.
Because this is not a class action, patients who were diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy after taking Levaquin, Cipro or any other fluoroquinolone antibiotic will need to hire attorneys to file their own lawsuits.
What Can I Collect In a Lawsuit?
Patients who took these antibiotics and suffered nerve damage may be able to recover compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Future accommodations required to manage their condition
How Much Does a Lawyer Cost?
Defective drug lawyers typically work on a contingency-fee basis, meaning that they will only collect a fee if they favorably resolve your case. In these cases, they will take a percentage of your final settlement or verdict.
FDA Warns Cipro, Other Antibiotics May Cause Permanent Nerve Damage
In August 2013, the FDA announced that the makers of fluoroquinolone drugs should provide clearer warnings about the risk of peripheral neuropathy.
Previously, the labels for these drugs listed peripheral neuropathy as a rare but potential side effect. The label update, however, removed the term “rare” from the warning for these drugs. The change came after the FDA reviewed adverse event reports and found dozens of patients suffering symptoms of nerve damage after taking fluoroquinolones. Some patients experienced these symptoms just days after taking one of the drugs and, in some cases, the symptoms did not cease for months or even years after they stopped taking the antibiotics, according the FDA.
In light of these reports, the agency also concluded that the previous warnings on these drugs did not adequately describe the possibility that patients could develop peripheral neuropathy at any time or that the condition may be permanent.
Many organizations and citizens are now calling for the peripheral neuropathy warnings to become “black box” warnings (those which indicate that a drug may carry a significant risk of serious or life-threatening adverse effects).
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