Like so many drugs of the last decade, Actemra, also known as tocilizumab, came onto the market in 2010 being touted as a new and better drug to treat an old disease. Actemra, an immunosuppressive, could treat autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, in which the body’s defenses turn on itself. But unlike other drugs on the market, its manufacturer stated, Actemra had fewer side effects and fewer serious side effects.
Unfortunately, even though it was approved by the Food & Drug Administration, hundreds of adverse effect reports flooded in in the first years of Actemra’s use. These reports said that the drug had a number of dangerous side effects not listed on the medication’s box–and the result was hundreds, if not thousands, of deaths.
The serious side effects included:
Interstitial lung failure
If you or a loved one have taken Actemra and suffered a serious side effect like the ones listed above, you may have the legal right to compensation. All patients have a right to safe medication–and the full knowledge of that medication’s possible effects on the body. If a manufacturer knows (or should know) about complications related to the drug, they are responsible for letting both federal agencies and consumers know.
To talk to an experienced, knowledgeable attorney about your possible Actemra case, please call (617) 391-9001 to schedule a free consultation.
Generic name: Tocilizumab
Drug type: monoclonal antibody, immunosuppressive
Treatments for: Autoimmune disorders that include Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Polyarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (PJIA), Systemic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (SJIA), Castleman’s disease, and Giant Cell Arteritis (GCA).
Possible side effects: Upper respiratory infections, headaches, common colds, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, dizziness. Severe side effects include: serious infection, heart attack, stroke, interstitial lung failure and GI perforation.
FDA Approval: 2010
Manufacturer: Chugai Pharmaceuticals, Hoffmann-La Roche
Application: Monthly intravenous infusion or injection
If you have been harmed due to a serious side effect of Actemra that was not mentioned by your doctor, you may have grounds to file a defective drug lawsuit. This lawsuit, filed against the manufacturer and the marketer of the drug, would hold Big Pharma responsible for their actions and secure you the financial reward you deserve for your losses.
Compensation for your Actemra injury could include:
The medical costs associated with your Actemra injuries.
The future medical costs of your medical issues caused by Actemra.
Pain and suffering.
Loss of quality of life.
In addition, your reward could include punitive damages, which are assigned in order to ensure that the at-fault parties do not violate the law in the future.
Over 1,100 deaths have been associated with Actemra and reported to the FDA. If your loved one suffered a fatal heart attack, stroke, lung failure, or GI event after taking Actemra, you may wish to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
As of today, Actemra does not include a black box warning for the serious and sometimes deadly side effects listed above. At the same time, the company that manufactures the drug denies knowledge of these serious health concerns surrounding their RA drug.
At Sweeney Merrigan, we listen to our clients and we fight back against drug companies that put profit before patients. We are currently taking cases related to Actemra injuries and we want to hear your story. To speak with a lawyer, ask a question about our legal services, or schedule an appointment, please call Sweeney Merrigan Law at at (617) 391-9001 today.