Beasley Allen has one of the largest and most technologically advanced Mass Torts practices in the country. The Mass Torts division represents numerous people in claims against companies that manufacture and/or market defective pharmaceuticals and/or medical devices. The resources devoted to this division allow the firm to competently and conscientiously handle any group of cases, no matter how large, along with particular catastrophic injury cases.
Our firm was recently involved in one of the greatest victories in Mass Torts history, against drug manufacturer Merck regarding the drug Vioxx. After more than five years of hard-fought and difficult litigation, Merck agreed to pay $4.85 billion, the largest pharmaceutical settlement in U.S. history, to resolve certain Vioxx-related claims involving plaintiffs who suffered a heart attack, including sudden cardiac death, or a stroke.
The male hormone testosterone may cause cancerous tumor growth in the colon, according to new research. Researchers at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine observed normal levels of naturally occurring colon cancer in a group of male rats. When the testosterone was removed from those rats, colon cancer rates decreased dramatically. When the testosterone was reintroduced, the colon cancer rates returned to normal. It was previously thought that female hormones may have offered some protection against tumor susceptibility. “However, by showing that removing testosterone from rats leads to a dramatic decrease in colon cancer susceptibility, it appears that ... Read More
Manufacturers of some type 2 diabetes drugs are working on federal approval to expand their drug’s indication to include weight loss even in patients who do not have the chronic disease. When Novo Nordisk discovered that its type 2 diabetes drug Victoza had a side effect of weight loss, the company set out to test the drug at higher doses in clinical trials to see if it could trigger weight loss in both diabetics and non-diabetics. Data shows that the drug can melt up to 10 percent of body mass and, as a result, Novo Nordisk has filed for marketing ... Read More
Even before the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the marketing of drug to treat the most common form of Hepatitis C, questions were raised about the seemingly exorbitant price tag. Now the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) has filed a lawsuit against Gilead Sciences, makers of the drug Sovaldi. The class action lawsuit claims that Gilead’s patent protection is not enough to justify the tens of thousands it costs per treatment course. Since the drug was approved late last year, SEPTA has spent $2.4 million on Sovaldi for its employees. A single 12-week regime of Sovaldi costs $84,000. In ... Read More
A young mother is fighting for her life after taking a friend’s prescription antibiotic and suffering an allergic reaction that doctors say is causing her to burn from the inside out. Yassmeen Castanada took the antibiotic on Thanksgiving to help ward off a sickness she felt coming on. But shortly afterward her eyes, nose and throat began to burn. She was rushed to the emergency room where her condition progressed. Within days, blisters covered her body and her skin began to peel off in sheets, causing excruciating pain and exposing her to life-threatening infection. The diagnosis – Stevens Johnson Syndrome ... Read More
The antipsychotic drug ziprasidone, sold under the brand name Geodon and generics, has been linked to a rare but serious skin reaction that can progress to affect other parts of the body, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reported. New warnings have been added to the drug’s label to describe the serious condition known as Drug Reaction with Eosinophilia and Systemic Symptoms (DRESS). DRESS generally starts as a rash that can spread to all parts of the body. Symptoms include fever, swollen lymph nodes, and inflammation of organs including the liver, kidneys, lungs, heart or pancreas. DRESS also causes a higher-than-normal ... Read More
The antidepressant Cymbalta (duloxetine hydrochloride) can cause patients to fall, faint or experience orthostatic hypotention, a form of low blood pressure that happens when standing up from a sitting or inclined position, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced. Some of these episodes have resulted in falls with serious consequences including bone fractures and hospitalizations. The agency is requiring a new warning be placed on the safety labels of Cymbalta. Cymbalta is in a class of antidepressants known as serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, or SNRIs. It is prescribed for major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. Fainting and orthostatic hypotension with antidepressant ... Read More
Before Tom Harbert died, he wanted to warn others not to let suspicious symptoms go unchecked. By the time he doctors found the source of his painful abdominal cramps, the cancerous tumor in his bladder had already made its way through the bladder wall. Doctors told him the prognosis was grim. About 70,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with bladder cancer each year and about 15,600 die from the disease annually. The No. 1 risk factor for bladder cancer is smoking. But Harbert, 51, was not a smoker nor was he around any chemicals that would have increased ... Read More
The U.S. Judiciary Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has consolidated nearly two dozen lawsuits in Louisiana federal court filed against Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals and Bayer Corp., alleging the drug companies failed to warn that the blood thinner Xarelto could cause serious bleeding events. Defendants fought centralizing the lawsuits, claiming discrepancies in dosage and patients’ medical history made the cases too dissimilar. But the panel found the Xarelto side effects lawsuits struck a similar chord in their claims that the drug companies withheld information from clinical trials that showed the drug could increase the risk for life-threatening bleeding events. ... Read More
An advisor for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) who sat on a panel in July to review serious safety concerns involving a surgical tool known as a power morcellator had received tens of thousands of dollars from manufacturers of the tools from 2009 to 2013, according to an investigation by The Wall Street Journal. Laparoscopic power morcellators are devices used to mince uterine growths or entire uteruses inside the body and remove them through a small incision in the abdomen. The tools have become favored by many doctors because they are less invasive, offer shorter recovery and leave less scarring ... Read More
Pfizer’s revenue has taken a steady dive since 2011, the year its blockbuster cholesterol-lowering statin medication Lipitor went off patent in the United States, opening the door for generic rivals. Once the most prescribed medication in the world, Lipitor still manages billion-dollar sales. However, the $1.5 billion in sales for the first nine months of 2014 pale in comparison to the $9.6 billion the drug brought in just three years prior. Pfizer protected its bottom line by selling and spinning off businesses, reducing its workforce, and cutting its dividends. The company is steadfast in its search for another pharmaceutical to take ... Read More