Last May, the FDA warned consumers of a growing trend in nerve damage side effects from the popular antibiotics Levaquin, Avelox and Cipro. The news prompted calls for greater label warnings, an FDA public hearing, and the creation of a special court for victims who hadn’t been properly warned of the risks to file lawsuits.
Now, as the issue of antibiotic nerve damage risks gains greater exposure, the first Levaquin lawsuit has begun and a judge recently cleared the way for more victims to file claims.
Levaquin, Avelox and Peripheral Neuropathy
Three of the most common antibiotics used today - levaquin, avelox and cipro - belong to a class of drugs known as flouroquinolones. These were designed to fight serious infections in hospital settings, but are increasingly being prescribed for less severe conditions like urinary tract or sinus infection.
All three contain fine print warnings about a nerve condition called peripheral neuropathy. However, the FDA has determined that these warnings weren’t sufficient for consumers, and the agency is requiring more disclosure by manufacturers Bayer and Johnson & Johnson.
Peripheral neuropathy is a permanent disorder caused by damage to the peripheral nerves. Its most common symptoms are tingling, numbness, pain or weakness in the upper and lower extremities. Causes include diabetes, infection, nerve injury and prescription drug toxins.
Special Court Created for Avelox, Cipro & Levaquin Lawsuits
Last August, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation created a special multidistrict litigation court in Minnesota to handle a growing number of lawsuits by patients that had developed peripheral neuropathy after taking Levaquin or Avelox.
The court will consolidate cases from around the country into one venue for faster handing and sharing of resources. The case is known as MDL 2642, IN RE: Fluoroquinolone Products Liability Litigation, and is presided over by U.S. District Judge John R. Tunheim.
Currently, 350 patients have filed lawsuits for Levaquin or Avelox nerve damage, and the number continues to rise.
Last week, a federal judge refused the request of Johnson & Johnson to dismiss a case from a man filed in Illinois over peripheral neuropathy, saying it was too early to rule on whether his case was filed timely.
Selecting a Lawyer for a Levaquin or Avelox Claim
At present, a number of qualified firms from around the country have joined the litigation involving antibiotic nerve damage. However, with the complexity of this federal multidistrict case against several large drug companies, it is important to choose a lawyer with significant experience in this area.
DrugNews works only with lawyers that specialize in defective drug injury litigation, and can arrange for you to speak directly with one today for more information or help filing a claim. Contact us for more details.
JPML. Pending MDLs as of January 15, 2016. Retrieved from www.jpml.uscourts.gov
Godoy, J. J&J Can't Dodge Levaquin Side-Effect Suit For Tardy Filing. Law360. (January 22, 2016). Retrieved from www.law360.com
Last summer, the Department of Justice unveiled the details of an ongoing lawsuit and resulting settlement against industrial giant 3M, claiming the company had furnished defective combat earplugs to millions of U.S. troops serving around the world.