U.S. District Judge Matthew Kennelly threw out 160 cases from a multidistrict litigation (MDL) involving cardiovascular risks with testosterone replacement therapies because they failed to provide more information about their use of the products, how they obtained them, and their alleged injuries.
“The failure of these plaintiffs to produce discovery is prejudicial to the defendants in these cases because it hinders the investigation and preparation of a defense in these cases,” Judge Kennelly wrote. He also suggested more dismissals may be ordered down the line.
The dismissal of 160 cases makes a small impact on the multidistrict litigation, where more than 6,200 cases are pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Plaintiffs blame various manufacturers of testosterone replacement therapies for not adequately warning that use of the drugs could case heart attacks, strokes, blood clots and death.
Some claim that the drug companies used unscrupulous marketing techniques, like creating a condition called Low T, to push sales of their medication to men for whom the drug is not recommended. Testosterone treatments are intended for men with hypogonadism, a condition in which men do not produce enough of the male hormone due to injury, defect or disease. It is not for older men with a natural drop in testosterone levels.
To date, the only cases to go to trial have been bellwethers against AbbVie and Auxilium. Two of the cases ended with damages awarded to the plaintiff. One went in favor of the defense.