California Accutane Attorney
Since 1982, it is estimated that approximately 20 million people have used the prescription drug Accutane for the treatment of acne. Unfortunately, this drug has also been the subject of increasing litigation due to reports of serious side effects. If you or a loved one has suffered harm from the use of Accutane, you should contact an Accutane lawyer experienced in pharmaceutical litigation as soon as possible.
What is Accutane?
Accutane (Isotretinoin) is a synthetic form of vitamin A that has been used to treat more serious cases of acne, such as recalcitrant nodular acne. It is manufactured by Roche Pharmaceuticals and has also been marketed with the trade names Amnesteem, Claravis, and Sotret. Accutane was first developed as a drug used to attack rapidly dividing cells in patients with brain and pancreatic cancer. Accutaine treats acne by drying out oil and other substances that block skin pores and by reducing skin gland size.
Accutane was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1982 and is one of the three drugs on the market with the largest number of reports of adverse side effects. Within the first year of its release, there were numerous reports of birth defects from women who took the drug during pregnancy. Although warnings were issued, reports of birth defects and other serious side effects continued to increase. Since 1982, there have been over 140 suicides associated with Accutane. From 1997 to 2002, the FDA received a large number of reports of inflammatory bowel disease associated with the use of Accutane. Since 1983, the FDA has released several warnings regarding the serious side effects that can result from use of the drug. Although generic forms of the drug remain available, Roche Pharmaceuticals pulled Accutane from the market in June of 2009, due in large part to the increasing costs of defending personal injury lawsuits. The most serious side effects caused by the use of Accutane include:
- Birth defects: many lawsuits have been filed by mothers who were using Accutane and delivered babies with severe birth defects, including premature birth, mental retardation, physical deformities, and fetal death.
- Gastrointestinal: there have been many lawsuits involving gastrointestinal disorders, including inflammatory bowel disease, rectal bleeding, colon cancer, Crohn’s Disease, Proctitis and Ulcerative Colitis.
- Depression and suicide: the use of Accutane has been linked to some severe psychological effects, including suicide. Side effects may include depression, psychosis, anxiety, irritability, violent propensities, and attempted suicide.
- Other side effects: other side affects have included liver damage, Lupus, Pancreatitis, and hypertension.
Legal Recovery for Injuries
If you or a family member has used Accutane and experienced serious side effects, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries. An injured party can file one or both of the following types of claims:
- Products liability: an injured party may be able to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the drug.
- Medical malpractice: other responsible parties might include healthcare providers who unnecessarily prescribed Accutane or failed to warn patients of the side effects. A healthcare provider may also be liable if he or she failed to adequately monitor the patient during treatment.
If you or a loved one has been harmed by the use of Accutane, it is essential that you contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible to evaluate your claim. The attorneys at Arias Ozzello & Gignac have the experience and legal knowledge necessary to effectively fight for your legal rights in this specialized area of pharmaceutical litigation.