- Anybody who has used the drug can pursue a lawsuit for negligence and failure to warn consumers of the risks
- People who have contracted bladder cancer, congestive heart failure, chronic kidney disease, increased bone fracture risk, and macular edema or other diseases as a result of using Actos.
- Close family members of people who have died as a consequence of using Actos.
- Terrence Allen vs. Takeda Pharmaceutical, in which the plaintiff was awarded 1.5 million in compensatory damages.
Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, headquartered in Japan, is the largest pharmaceutical firm in all of Asia and one of the top 20 largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. Their tagline suggests that they are committed to providing better health and brighter futures to all their consumers. Takeda Pharmaceutical has a big portfolio with medicinal drugs focusing mainly on gastroenterology, neurology, inflammation, and other disorders. Their star product was the drug Actos, which they launched in 1999. It went on to become the best selling diabetes drug in history, making a record $4 billion in a year. Eli Lilly was Takeda Pharmaceutical’s marketing partner in America and was its representative there. Both companies earned huge profits as a result of selling the Actos drug.
Pioglitazone, sold under the brand name of Actos by Takeda Pharmaceutical, is an oral medicine for patients who have Type II diabetes. The drug aims to help control blood sugar levels in adults, and need to be paired with a healthy exercise routine and diet in order to get the best results. Pioglitazone can also be taken in conjunction with other medicines and is said to allow the body to make better use of the insulin that the body produces. It must be noted that pioglitazone is only used to treat Type 2 diabetes, and not Type I.
The active ingredient in Actos is pioglitazone hydrochloride, part of the anti-diabetes drug class called thiazolidinediones. The ingredients in this class work by increasing the body’s sensitivity to its own insulin, allowing the hormone to perform its function of regulating blood sugar more effectively. Actos can work in three ways:
- Monotherapy: Actos is used as a standalone drug to increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin
- Dual Therapy: Actos is administered to the patient, along with a strict diet and exercise routine
- Triple-Oral Therapy: Actos is given to the patient, along with supplementary medication like metformin and sulphonylurea.
Actos or pioglitazone is contraindicated in patients with a history of cardiovascular diseases or events such as heart attacks and other heart problems. It is also contraindicated for people suffering from active bladder cancer or those who have a history of bladder cancer. People who are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis are also told to prevent using Actos. Thus, it is important that you disclose your full medical history to your doctor so you don’t have to face dreadful consequences later.Uses of the Actos Drug
Actos is specifically designed for the treatment of a very specific medical condition: Type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that can inflict people of any age. However, in the modern era, with the right medication and lifestyle, diabetes can be kept in check. There are two types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Both are chronic and can cause high blood sugar levels, which can lead to multiple diabetes complications, such as eye problems, seizures, and even death.
Besides that, though, both types have stark differences. Let’s explore them in more detail.
Type 1 Diabetes
Patients suffering from Type 1 diabetes do not produce insulin naturally in their bodies. Their immune system, generally responsible for fighting off foreign invaders that find their way into the body, mistakes their own healthy cells for invaders, attacking and destroying them in the process. The immune system destroys insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas, too, leaving the body without a natural source of insulin.
Type 1 diabetes has no cure, but thankfully, it is less common than Type 2 diabetes. People who are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes have to take regular insulin injections and insulin pumps and keep regulating their quickly fluctuating blood sugar levels.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type II diabetes is characterized by the body’s inability to respond to the insulin produced in their bodies. The patients’ bodies are producing enough insulin, but they don’t recognize it or respond to this insulin-like they should. Later, Type 2 diabetes patients can also stop producing insulin altogether.
People with Type 2 diabetes simply have more insulin resistance, which prevents them from processing the insulin as they should, and thus, they need medication and lifestyle changes to make sure that their bodies use insulin more effectively. Type 2 diabetes can be controlled, and even reversed in some cases, with a dedication to several lifestyle alterations and medication.How Does the Drug Work?
Actos, one of the most popular anti-diabetes drugs in the world when it was released, had annual sales worth billions at its peak. It became a widely-used drug, gaining popularity among physicians and patients alike, to keep diabetes in control.
Actos, or pioglitazone hydrochloride, is basically a thiazolidinedione antidiabetic agent that works by reducing the body’s resistance to insulin in muscle and adipose tissues in the liver and the periphery, giving rise to more insulin-dependent glucose disposal. Actos improves glycemic control while reducing circulating insulin levels.
As mentioned before, Type 2 diabetes merely means that a person’s body has higher insulin resistance, and Actos works to decrease the resistance by making the cells more receptive to insulin.
Actos only works for patients of Type 2 diabetes, and not Type 1, because it is dependent on the presence of endogenous insulin, which Type 1 diabetes patients are not producing. Without that, it is incapable of reducing or having any effect on the blood glucose levels in the body and is thus absolutely ineffective for any type of diabetes except Type 2.Risks of Actos Usage
Actos has been shown to carry the risks of multiple diseases and complications, some even proving to be fatal. There is some evidence to suggest that Takeda Pharmaceutical and Eli Lilly were aware of the risks associated with the prolonged use of Actos but failed to warn consumers about the potential dangers of taking the medication. Some of the medical complications that Actos has been accused of causing are:
Even before the launch of Actos, there were studies showing the development of bladder tumors in male rats due to them taking doses of pioglitazone. When an initial study was conducted with humans, it showed an increase in the risk of bladder cancer in humans too. Recently, a detailed study confirmed the initial findings and proved that the use of pioglitazone does indeed cause bladder cancer in humans.
Congestive Heart Failure
Congestive heart failure occurs when the heart doesn’t pump blood as well as it should. Actos is said to double the chances of congestive heart failure in humans.
Actos is said to weaken bone tissues, causing people, especially women, to be more susceptible to broken bones in their legs, arms or hips while they are taking Actos.
Chronic Kidney Disease
Actos can even cause damage to the kidneys and increase the chances of kidney disease by 400%, leading to high blood pressure, the need for kidney replacement surgery, end-stage renal disease, or even death.
There are many other medical complications that can and have arisen as a result of taking the Actos drug, and a lot of people have lost their lives because of these complications. If you or your loved ones have a history of taking Actos for Type 2 diabetes, please be on the lookout for the symptoms of any of these diseases and get a medical exam done immediately to get a clean bill of health.
If you do notice symptoms of the above-mentioned medical complications, get medical help as soon as possible. Consult with a lawyer should you wish to pursue a claim or lawsuit against Takeda Pharmaceutical and Eli Lilly to hold them accountable for the damage the drug has caused you. At Frankl & Kominsky, our personal injury attorneys can try to help you get the amount of compensation that you deserve.Who Can File an Actos Lawsuit?
In light of the revelations that Actos is capable of causing multiple diseases and medical complications that can result in death, anybody who has suffered the consequences or side effects as a result of using the drug may be eligible to file a lawsuit.
Technically, all Actos users are eligible to pursue lawsuits against Actos for fraud, misinformation, misrepresentation, and negligence, regardless of whether they developed a disease or not. There is proof that Takeda Pharmaceuticals and its marketer, Eli Lilly, were aware of the connection between Actos and risks of several types of cancers, but they chose to keep it to themselves instead of revealing it to the public and warning them of the possible dangers of using the drug.
But there are more serious litigations against Takeda Pharmaceuticals, where the use of the drug has caused a plethora of diseases, such as bladder cancer, congestive heart failure, chronic kidney disease, increased bone fracture risk, and macular edema.
Such patients who have experienced and suffered through any of these as a consequence of taking Actos are eligible to file an Actos lawsuit against the manufacturer and claim damages for their medical treatments, lost wages, and other special damages.
Often, these afflictions have resulted in people’s deaths. In such unfortunate cases, the close family members of the deceased are also eligible to file a lawsuit against Takeda for wrongful death.
Contact Frankl & Kominsky for legal guidance in your claim against Takeda Pharmaceutical Company.How Long Do I Have to File an Actos Lawsuit?
The Statute of Limitations to file a lawsuit against Takeda Pharmaceutical will vary from state to state. If you fail to file your lawsuit within the Statute of Limitations, it is likely your case will be dismissed. Therefore, If you intend to take action against the manufacturer of Actos for bladder cancer, heart failure, or other acute injuries that the drug has caused you, you should do so immediately, We encourage you to consult with an injury firm for any questions about the statute of limitations and about pursuing this type of claim.How Many Lawsuits Have Been Filed Against Takeda Pharmaceuticals?
In 2012, a former employee at Takeda Pharmaceutical came out against the company and accused the company of hiding and destroying evidence that indicated Actos' strong correlation with bladder cancer and other side effects of the drug. The employee even claimed that the company knew about the link to several different types of cancers, too, but refused to acknowledge it.
Takeda Pharmaceuticals was taken to court, where a West Virginia jury concluded that Takeda Pharmaceuticals was indeed guilty of the charges that were brought against them. The jury demanded the pharmaceutical firm to pay $155,000 in fines for the destruction of documents and failure to disclose the information that the use of their drug was linked to all the above-mentioned medical complications.
Soon after, lawsuits started pouring in against Takeda Pharmaceuticals and Eli Lilly. People accused the pharmaceutical companies of being the culprit behind their bladder cancer and heart failure incidents and blamed the companies for not warning users of the dangers beforehand, despite knowing about the risks for years.
Over the years, about 10,000 lawsuits were brought against Takeda Pharmaceuticals, from all over the United States.Terrence Allen vs. Takeda Pharmaceutical
The first case to go up in multidistrict court against Takeda Pharmaceuticals was that of Terrence Allen. Terrence Allen, a shop-keeper in New York, filed a lawsuit in 2011, claiming that Actos caused him to develop bladder cancer. Mr. Allen had started taking the drug in 2006 and continued until he learned of his cancer diagnosis.
The jury agreed that the firm had known about the cancer risks and failed to warn anybody and consequently ended up deciding in favor of the plaintiffs, Terrence and Susan Allen. The pharmaceutical giant was ordered to pay $9 billion in punitive damages and 1.5 million in compensatory damages.
The jury found Takeda Pharmaceutical 75% liable and Eli Lilly 25% liable, and the $9 billion charge was divided in that ratio between the two companies. Takeda was charged with $6 billion and Eli Lilly with $3 billion.
This was the first bellwether trial, and nine more cases went to court after the success of Terrence Allen’s trial. The court found the pharmaceutical company liable to pay damages in most of them and ordered Takeda Pharmaceuticals to pay an estimated amount of $22 million to the plaintiffs in the cases. In 2015, Takeda Pharmaceuticals finally announced its decision to pay $2.4 billion to settle roughly 9000 pending cases against it. However, it still never admitted to any wrongdoing. Takeda Pharmaceutical maintained that Actos is a safe drug and is not responsible for the thousands of bladder cancers, heart failure, and wrongful deaths cases lawsuits that were filed against them.
Huge corporations and pharmaceuticals have a lot of resources at their disposal. When you go up against these big corporations, you should have dedicated lawyers who can represent you in court, pursue the compensation that you deserve, and hold these companies accountable for the anguish and agony that they cause people.Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer to File an Actos Lawsuit
At Frankl & Kominsky, our injury attorneys have assisted more than 6,000 clients. If you or a loved one were diagnosed with bladder cancer, congestive heart failure, liver failure, or any other injuries as a result of taking Actos, you may qualify for compensation for past and future medical bills, lost wages, and special damages.
In cases where the aforementioned diseases have resulted in a loved one’s death, we can try to pursue the compensation that you deserve through a wrongful death claim against the manufacturer, while you recover from the grief.
Contact the attorneys at Frankl Kominsky for a free case evaluation today and get valuable advice on how to move forward with your Actos lawsuit.