A Boston-area doctor notorious for pushing testosterone replacement therapy to his patients for the past three decades was ordered to turn over his tax records indicating how much money he was paid by manufacturers of testosterone drugs.
The order was made by U.S. District Judge Matthew F. Kennelly in the Northern District of Illinois regarding a multidistrict litigation (MDL) accusing testosterone replacement therapy manufacturers of promoting testosterone treatment for so-called Low T without revealing that use of the hormone can cause serious medical problems, including life threatening heart attacks, strokes and blood clots.
AbbVie is in the hot seat for the first of several bellwether trials involving adverse cardiac events connected to its top selling testosterone gel, AndroGel. More than 7,000 cases are pending in the multidistrict litigation, which also involves claims against other manufacturers of testosterone therapy. The first bellwether is scheduled to begin June 5.
Plaintiffs suing AbbVie allege that AndroGel causes the hematocrit level to increase, which causes the blood to thicken. If not monitored closely and effectively, this condition can lead to life-threatening cardiovascular events including blood clots, heart attacks and strokes. The lawsuits claim AbbVie failed to adequately warn physicians and patients of this risk.
The Boston-area physician, Dr. Abraham Morgentaler, Director of Men’s Health Boston, was ordered to reveal written agreements and 1099 tax statements about money he received from AbbVie and other manufacturers including Abbott Laboratories Inc., Eli Lilly and Co., Actavis Inc, Auxilium Pharmaceuticals Inc, and Pfizer Inc. He must also show Powerpont slides and presentation notes referring to testosterone replacement therapy going back seven years, as well as all documents and communications relating to the risks and benefits of testosterone therapy with the drug companies going back three years.
Judge Kennelly’s ruling brings to a close Morgantaler’s long-standing battle against a subpoena from the plaintiff’s steering committee, which portrayed him as playing a role in “the science, marketing, and use of TRT [testosterone replacement therapy] products involved in these MDL proceedings,” the ruling states.
Source: Mass Tort Nexus