ACTOS is a prescription medicine used with diet and exercise to improve blood sugar (glucose) control in adults with type 2 diabetes. ACTOS is the commercial name of the diabetes medicine called pioglitazone that may be taken alone or with other diabetes medicines, per the FDA. This type of drug has been marketed by the names of ACTOS and ACTOPLUS MET, and has been proven to increase the risk of bladder cancer in its users.
Image/ U.S. National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Wikimedia
The drug is manufactured by the biggest Asian pharmaceutical company, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and is marketed in the United States by Eli Lilly and Company. The drug was launched in the U.S. in 1999 and has been under attack since 2005 for its cancer-causing potential. Various independent studies were performed to confirm this cancer-causing correlation and prompted the drug to be pulled off the market in France and Germany by 2011.
On August 4, 2011, the FDA issued a safety warning informing the public of changes to the ACTOS drug label to advise that the use of pioglitazone-containing medications for more than one year may be associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer. In the same year, the first ACTOS bladder cancer lawsuits were filed. So far at least 4,200 cases have been filed against both the manufacturer and the marketer in Federal Court, as well as thousands more individual cases in state courts.
Our attorneys at Egerton Law have been following the progress of these cases to provide our clients with current information. We have learned that juries have awarded $6.5 million and $1.5 million to plaintiffs from cases tried, for injuries sustained and medical bills. In the most recent case, and the first one tried in Federal Court, the jury also imposed punitive damages on both companies for a total amount of $9 billion, due to failure to warn of the potential danger of bladder cancer, hiding the propensity of the cancer to develop, and negligence in the drug’s marketing efforts. Based on data compiled by Bloomberg, the $9 billion jury award is the seventh-largest in U.S. history.
Recently, information has surfaced that Takeda Pharmaceuticals has offered to pay more than $2.2 billion to resolve the claims currently pending in the Federal Court and those in state courts such as Illinois, West Virginia, California and Pennsylvania. Losing cases that result in these large verdicts may have convinced Takeda and Eli Lilly to now consider settling the cases to prevent additional awards. If a settlement is reached, it would be the first one in 3 years of ACTOS related litigation.
According to the Federal Court’s MDL docket, the first formal settlement negotiations have been scheduled for April 16, 2015, and they will go on to at least March 18, 2016. The pressure of additional litigation is mounting on Takeda and Eli Lilly to come up with fair compensation for the claimants.
At Egerton Law, our experienced attorneys can answer your questions about injuries, including bladder cancer that you may have suffered due to the use of ACTOS or any other pioglitazone-containing medications.
If you, or someone you know, has suffered bladder cancer after taking ACTOS, and you want more information concerning bladder cancer, you can contact us by phone or with our web contact form.