Lawsuits Being Filed Against Merck
The skilled team of Sullo & Sullo attorneys is reaching out to those who have
been harmed by the diabetes drug, Januvia. Certain diabetic drugs currently on the
market affect the GLP-1 metabolic pathway while keeping type 2 diabetes under control.
Januvia is one such drug; although the drug gained FDA approval in October, 2006,
adverse reports began coming in soon after. The FDA issued multiple healthcare provider
alerts regarding Januvia beginning in 2007 which noted the increased risk of acute
pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. By 2011, University of California researchers
reviewed the current Januvia data and concluded that patients who took Januvia had
three times the risk of pancreatic cancer, taking other factors into account.
As noted, the active ingredient in Januvia, sitaglipin, interferes with the GLP-1
metabolic pathway residing in the pancreas duct, resulting in a very real risk of
pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. In fact, research done in March, 2013, concluded
patients taking Januvia had twice the risk of acute pancreatitis which in turn correlated
to an increase in pancreatic cancer. Because most Januvia users had no idea of the
risks involved with the drug, lawsuits are being filed against the manufacturer
of Januvia, Merck & Co. As of April, 2013, there is one consolidated proceeding
involving multiple pancreatic cancer lawsuits pending in state court in Los Angeles,
Motion to Consolidate
Another motion is currently pending which requests the creation of a federal MDL
in the Southern District of California. This motion would consolidate the more than
one dozen cases already filed in the area. Thus far, while many lawsuits have been
filed, none have yet gone to trial, meaning no jury verdicts or settlements have
resulted. There is a “bellwether” trial slated to take place this summer
which claims sitaglipin was responsible for pancreatic cancer in the patient. In
light of the pending MDL, it is possible this bellwether trial could be postponed.
Januvia Potential Class Action vs. Mass Tort or MDL
For those who are wondering whether they should join a class action suit against
Januvia manufacturer, Merck & Co., it is important to understand the difference
between a class action lawsuit and a mass tort, or MDL. In a class action lawsuit
plaintiffs share such things as discovery and representation. All claims are tried
at once and should the court find for the plaintiffs, the settlement amount is split
equally between all plaintiffs. Class action suits do not differentiate between
those who were more seriously harmed as opposed to those who suffered minor damages.
The MDL or mass tort also shares resources and has a team of common representation
however there is a serious difference: the plaintiffs in an MDL remain individualized.
This means that plaintiffs who suffered more harm can potentially receive larger
settlements that are more commensurate with their injuries. For those who have been
seriously harmed by Januvia, a class action suit would be unlikely to compensate
them fairly for their damages.
Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer Risk from Januvia
It is expected that Merck & Co. will assert that diabetics are more vulnerable
to developing pancreatitis than those without diabetes. While this argument may
have some validity, research nevertheless shows Januvia significantly increases
the risks of pancreatic cancer, pancreatitis and other serious side effects as well.
A recent small study of those taking diabetes drugs such as Januvia which contain
sitaglipin showed the drug affected pancreatic cell growth and caused damage which
could turn cancerous. In addition to the studies, there are an increasing number
of reports to the FDA of pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer among patients taking
Januvia when compared to diabetics taking other drugs.
Did Merck Fail to Warn?
Many Januvia pancreatic cancer attorneys believe there was a serious failure to
warn on the part of Merck regarding the potential hazards of the drug. Neither medical
practitioners nor pharmaceutical consumers were made aware of the risk of serious,
even potentially fatal, Januvia side effects including pancreatitis, pancreatic
cancer, thyroid cancer and other serious medical symptoms. Those victims of Januvia
who believe they have a Januvia diabetic drug lawsuit, should consult with a reputable,
experienced attorney in order to determine whether they have a valid case.
What Factors Determine Whether You Have a Januvia Lawsuit?
Our Sullo & Sullo attorneys will never advise potential clients to pursue a
case unless we have carefully looked at every aspect and believe this is the best
course of action. For those who have taken Januvia and experienced only minor side
effects but thankfully have not developed more serious diseases such as pancreatic
or thyroid cancer our attorneys may advise that a lawsuit would offer few benefits.
However for those who took Januvia in good faith, believing it was safe, and have
developed more serious effects, a Januvia lawsuit could pay for all medical expenses
which resulted from the drug as well as lost wages and pain and suffering. Those
victims of Januvia who have a very strong case could benefit from the aggressive
representation of Sullo & Sullo Januvia lawsuit attorneys.
Sullo & Sullo Can Provide Legal Assistance
The lawyers of Sullo & Sullo, LLP, have the experience and background necessary
to handle serious injury or death cases related to a defective drug such as Januvia.
Our attorneys are highly knowledgeable in filing “Januvia” legal action
in order to try and get victims of the drug compensation for their injuries. Sullo
& Sullo, LLP is very much a client-focused firm with a reputation for exemplary
personal attention and passionate advocacy for the future of our clients. Our Januvia
lawsuit attorneys will thoroughly evaluate each individual case and will work with
our clients in order to define and achieve their objectives.