Several months ago, we brought you a story about a small-town, family-owned drug store in West Virginia (one of the last of its kind), that was dragged into Actos litigation by a plaintiff on grounds that the pharmacy's owner knew about the harmful effects of the medication and failed to inform the patient.
In June, the government of India joined those of France and Germany in banning Takeda's flagship diabetic treatment, pioglitazone – better known as Actos, which as been strongly implicated in placing patients at an increased risk of developing bladder cancer. According to a media source in that country, the reason was “the [Indian] Health Ministry’s commitment to a parliamentary committee that it would immediately suspend medicines not allowed for sale in major international markets.”
The executives at Takeda Pharmaceuticals may be gloating over their recent victory in which a California judge overturned a $6.5 million judgment in favor of the plaintiff - but they shouldn't get too smug about it. Currently, some 3,000 lawsuits have been filed in U.S. federal courts against the Japanese-based pharmaceutical company, and according to some estimates, there could be as many as 7,000 more yet to come.
Earlier this year, the first of 3000 injury cases against Japanese pharmaceutical company Takeda was heard in a Los Angeles court. The allegation: their flagship product, Actos, had caused plaintiff Jack Cooper to develop bladder cancer. Although Mr.
Late last month, a Los Angeles jury decided that Takeda executives were in fact aware of the cancer risk from its flagship product, Actos – and ordered the Japanese pharmaceutical giant to pay $6.5 million to plaintiff Jack Cooper and his wife. Cooper's lawyers presented the court with evidence demonstrating that Takeda executives were aware of the risks associated with Actos as far back as 2004 – yet spent the next seven years hiding this information from regulators.
Jack Cooper, a retired communications worker, states that at age sixty-four – prior to being prescribed the diabetic drug Actos – he was in good health and looking forward to many more years with his wife of nearly fifty years and his grandchildren.
Just two years ago, Takeda Pharmaceuticals' Actos (dabigatran) was the top-selling diabetic drug in the world. With over $4.5 billion in sales, it accounted for 27% of the company's revenue.
Today, the drug has been been implicated in the development of bladder cancer. It has been pulled from pharmacy shelves in the E.U. and is under increasing scrutiny by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The British Medical Journal (BMJ) recently published a study which demonstrated an increasing risk of developing bladder cancer with long-term use.
Several law firms across the country have issued press releases across the Internet with the news many bladder cancer victims have been waiting for. The first trial involving Takeda Pharmaceuticals and their allegedly-defective diabetic drug, Actos, will commence on 19 February, 2013.
The case involves one Jack Cooper and other parties, and will be overseen by the Honorable Judge Kenneth R. Freeman.
An example arose in West Virginia recently illustrating how a party other than a drug manufacturer can bear potential liability – in this case, the pharmacy that sold the prescription.
If you have been prescribed a dangerous drug or received a defective medical device – such as a hip or joint implant or a pelvic mesh, both of which have been demonstrated to cause serious health problems – you understand that you have a right to sue the manufacturer for damages.