9,000 Victims Developed Bladder Cancer
CHICAGO — Peter J. Flowers, of Meyers & Flowers Law Firm and Co-Lead Counsel for the Plaintiffs in the Illinois State Court litigation against Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., reached a $2.4 billion settlement today for 9,000 victims who developed bladder cancer while taking the manufacturer’s diabetes medication, Actos (pioglitazone). The plaintiffs involved in this case allege that Takeda concealed the risk of bladder cancer. This is the second largest settlement paid to victims targeting side effects for a drug that is still on the market. Restitution will be paid to the 9,000 plaintiffs across the nation. In Illinois, the settlement will include near 4,000 victims who filed suits in Cook County.
“It has been determined that Takeda Pharmaceutical knew about the link between Actos and the risk of bladder cancer before this defective drug was released on the market more than a decade ago,” said Flowers, Co-Lead Counsel for the Plaintiffs in the Illinois litigation. “Takeda has a responsibility to physicians and patients to clinically test a drug and accurately warn them of potentially harmful side effects.”
Takeda, the largest pharmaceutical company in Japan, released Actos in 1999 and subsequently earned more than $16 billion in global sales of Actos since the launch. Actos is a drug designed to lower blood sugar levels in patients with type II diabetes. In June of 2011 more than 10 years later, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning about the risk of bladder cancer for long-term use of the Actos, which was defined as using the drug for longer than a year. At that time, the FDA held off on a recall until they reviewed long-term studies that were currently in process to better determine the amount of bladder cancer risk in relation to the benefit of the drug lowering blood sugar levels for patients with diabetes. Simultaneously, France and Germany removed the drug from the market due to the risk of bladder cancer.
The victims have suffered excruciating pain as a result of bladder cancer, surgery to remove their bladder, chemotherapy and recovery. The bladder cancer, in many cases, has altered their quality of life, spread to other organs, and robbed them of a normal functioning bladder.
“Due to Takeda’s negligence in informing the public of the cancer risk, this settlement will recover some compensation for the victims who have been injured and, in some cases, maimed by bladder cancer while taking Actos, a drug that was designed to improve their health, not make it worse,” Flowers said.
Led by Illinois Super Lawyer and former President of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association Peter J. Flowers, our Meyers & Flowers team of experienced and creative trial attorneys & medical malpractice lawyers routinely take on large challenges, and succeed. In addition to representing clients locally in Chicago and nationally in a full spectrum of cases involving catastrophic personal injuries, workplace injuries and wrongful death, our team of top attorneys has taken the lead nationally in representing clients who are victims of defective medical products.