A substantial number of breast cancer patients in the U.S. have received treatment using a drug called Taxotere, which is manufactured by a company called Sanofi. Unlike other cancer drugs that required weekly appointments, Taxotere required treatment only once every three weeks. For cancer patients who are still busy juggling other commitments, this was an appealing option. In addition to being used to treat breast cancer, the drug has also been employed to treat stomach cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, neck cancer, head cancer, and metastatic prostate cancer.
Soon after the drug became a popular treatment, numerous reports surfaced from patients claiming that they suffered permanent hair loss as a result of taking the drug. According to the slew of lawsuits that were filed after the reports became widespread, the plaintiffs largely alleged that the drug maker failed to provide appropriate warnings and disclosures regarding the drug’s potentially disfiguring side effects. Other allegations included failing to conduct appropriate investigations into the safety and potential side effects of the drug, concealing information from consumers, and failing to fully and accurately communicate the severity of the dangers that could arise from taking the drug.
In addition to the adverse reaction reports that surfaced, studies have shown that nearly 10 percent of breast cancer patients who took Taxotere suffered alopecia that persisted for 10 years or more. This caused a variety of injuries and consequences, including emotional distress, pain and suffering, social anxiety, and disfigurement.
Drug makers have a duty to use reasonable care when developing, manufacturing, marketing, and selling the products they make. If a company breaches the duty, it can be held liable for any damages that result, including pain and suffering. In addition to this negligence-based cause of action, victims can bring a product liability lawsuit against the drug maker. Unlike in a negligence cause of action, the plaintiff does not need to show that the defendant was at fault. Instead, the plaintiff must prove that the design of the drug was unreasonably dangerous. This includes any failure to provide adequate warnings.
Each state has developed different rules regarding how a plaintiff must go about proving that a drug is unreasonably dangerous. Some states use a risk versus utility balancing test, while others use a consumer expectations test. Under this latter approach, the plaintiff must prove that the drug was more dangerous than a reasonable consumer would expect it to be, which includes a consideration of any information or marketing materials provided with the drug.
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries as a result of taking the cancer drug Taxotere, you may be entitled to compensation. At Moll Law Group, our dangerous drug lawyers have counseled numerous cancer patients and their families throughout the U.S., including in Illinois, New York, California, and Florida. We offer a free consultation via phone or in person to help you learn more about the legal options that may be available to you. Call us at 312-462-1700 or contact us online to set up your consultation today.