Three Actos Bladder Cancer Lawsuits in Los Angeles
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE :
Los Angeles, California, December 29, 2011 – – Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, P.C. (www.baumhedlundlaw.com) has filed three lawsuits today against Japanese-based Takeda Pharmaceuticals and its subsidiaries on behalf of three California residents and their spouses alleging the diabetes drug Actos caused their bladder cancer.
The 12-count complaints seek compensatory damages on behalf of Gerard Aina and his wife Joyce of Ventura County (BC476063), John Loos and his wife Bibiana of San Bernardino County (BC476062), and Andrea Neubo and her husband Jeffrey of Orange County (BC476064).
The plaintiffs allege that Takeda Pharmaceuticals knew or should have known that Actos use in humans would cause bladder cancer and that Takeda possessed pre-clinical scientific studies, including animal evidence, which signaled that bladder cancer risk needed to be further tested; all prior to Takeda applying for and obtaining approval for Actos. In fact, plaintiffs allege that Takeda has known since the early 2000’s that human clinical trials revealed Actos causes bladder cancer.
The lawsuits, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, also allege that for over 10 years and to date, Takeda concealed and failed to completely disclose its knowledge that Actos was associated with or could cause bladder cancer or its knowledge that it had failed to fully study and test regarding that risk.
“Diabetes patients take medication to improve their health, not make it worse,” stated the families’ attorney, Cynthia Garber, also an R.N. “The company should have warned healthcare workers and patients of the risks of bladder cancer associated with Actos. Takeda should be held accountable for their wrong-doing.”
A handful of U.S. District judges will likely decide in early January as to where the Actos bladder cancer cases filed in federal courts will be consolidated. The first meeting concerning coordinating the discovery and litigation on the Actos cases was held on December 1, 2011 in Savannah, Georgia before the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML).
Another hearing is scheduled in Los Angeles at Central Civil West Courthouse, Los Angeles Superior Court on January 4, 2012 before the Judicial Council Coordination Proceeding (JCCP) to coordinate and consolidate the Actos bladder cancer cases filed in California state courts.
We estimate that hundreds of cases have been filed and that this number could reach thousands based on the wide use of the drug.
Actos [pioglitazone] received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in 1999 to treat Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and the plaintiffs all allege personal injury caused by the drug, including; bladder cancer and related sequelae, pain and suffering, bodily impairment, mental anguish, diminished enjoyment of life as well as economic loss and other special damages.
Drug watchdogs around the world have recently reviewed the use of Actos. In France on June 7, 2011 the Caisse nationale de l’assurance maladie published a report which concluded that there is a statistically significant association between exposure to Actos and bladder cancer and that the risk increased with exposure longer than one year.
Two days later the European Medicine Agency suspended the use of Actos. This was followed by Germany’s Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices suspending the use of the drug. Health Canada is currently undertaking a review of the drug.
The FDA has not yet suspended Actos in the U.S. but on June 15, 2011 the FDA issued a Public Safety Announcement informing the public that use of the diabetes medication Actos (pioglitazone) for more than one year may be associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer. It further stated that information about this risk will added to the Warnings and Precautions section of the label for pioglitazone-containing medicines. The patient Medication Guide for these medicines will also be revised to include information on the risk of bladder cancer. The FDA also recommended that healthcare professionals tell their diabetes patients diagnosed with bladder cancer to stop taking Actos or pioglitazone.
Earlier this month, Bloomberg News reported that millions of people switched from the controversial diabetes drug Avandia to Actos, after Avandia was linked to heart attacks and cardiovascular death. The sales of Actos rose from about $3 billion in 2006 to almost $5 billion last year. GlaxoSmithKline, manufacturers of Avandia, has paid more than $6 billion for legal costs tied to Avandia and other medicines.
About Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, P.C.
Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman has successfully represented clients harmed by medications in over 4,000 individual personal injury and wrongful death cases, in addition to representing consumers in multiple pharmaceutical class actions against major pharmaceutical companies such as Alpha Therapeutic, Armour Pharmaceutical Co., Baxter Health Care Corp, Bayer Corp., Dalkon Shield, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, and Pfizer.
Our team of lawyers working on the Actos bladder cancer cases have an in depth understanding of biomedical research, clinical trials, statistics, the pharmaceutical industry and marketing, as well as successful and effective discovery procedures and extensive work with experts on complicated scientific issues because of their years of experience related to Baum Hedlund’s past pharmaceutical litigation.