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Concern Over Cardiovascular Risks Leads to Avandia Recall

Our Illinois personal injury lawyers are concerned about the FDA’s recall of Avandia, a pharmaceutical intended to treat diabetes.

Avandia is one of the most popular drugs used in the treatment of patients with diabetes. It works by binding to receptors in human fat cells, and making those cells more responsive to insulin. Nevertheless, recent reports have shown a strong link to major health problems, including the risk of death.

Avandia is manufactured by London, United Kingdom-based GlaxoSmithKline, which is the third-largest pharmaceutical company in the world, after Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer. Complaints and concerns about the drug started around the year 2000, and the FDA has recently undertaken extensive testing to determine potential health and safety hazards associated with Avandia. In response to these tests, the FDA has approved further restrictions on the sale and prescription of this drug.

There has been an enormous amount of research showing that Avandia is associated with potentially-fatal cardiovascular problems. In February of 2007, GlaxoSmithKline disseminated a warning that use of Avandia was potentially associated with the risk of bone fractures, especially in female users. In November of 2008, the consumer group Citizen Watchdog issued a statement that warned consumers of the potential link to liver failure, cardiovascular issues, vision problems, and anemia. In response, GlaxoSmithKline denied the reports.

The New England Journal of Medicine published an article in June of 2010 that exposed the fact that Avandia use increased the risk of heart attacks by 43% and the risk of cardiovascular-related death by 64%. GlaxoSmithKline has since recalled Avandia from European countries, and the FDA ordered a restriction on the use and prescription of Avandia because of the enormous risks of cardiovascular issues.

This type of situation is one that is absolutely covered under Products Liability Law. Products Liability is an area of Illinois personal injury law that focuses on dangerous and defective products; when a corporation manufactures and/or distributes a product to the public, that company is responsible for testing the merchandise for safety before putting it on the market. When a dangerous or defective product causes injury to consumers, the company may be liable for the damages caused by those injuries.

Many Avandia consumers who have suffered side-effects as a result of using the drug have since filed personal injury lawsuits against GlaxoSmithKline. Currently there are thousands of pending lawsuits against GlaxoSmithKline. As of July 2010, GlaxoSmithKline had agree to settle more than 11,500 of the more than 13,000 pending lawsuits.

Our Chicago personal injury attorneys understand the dangers associated with defective medications. In fact, our attorneys brought a case against Orion Research Inc. and Baxter Health Care Corporation for a flawed test for the genetic disease cystic fibrosis. The failures of the test led a set of parents to have second child born with cystic-fibrosis. In addition to winning a substantial settlement for the family, our attorneys and the family were more concerned with the discontinuation of the test. As a result of our efforts, the test was eliminated.

If you or a loved on have taken a prescription for Avandia and have suffered injury as a result of the negative side effects, talk to your doctor about finding an alternative medication, and contact an attorney to learn whether you are entitled to compensation under the law.