Generically known as efalizumab, Raptiva is an injectable medication that, up until April 2009, was prescribed to treat psoriasis, an autoimmune disease that causes the skin to be marked by red, scaly patches known as plaques. Raptiva would reduce, if not eliminate, the presence of these plaques by suppressing the immune system and preventing white blood cells from migrating to skin tissues.
Despite its effectiveness at treating psoriasis, Raptiva has been found to cause a few life-threatening side effects. In fact, on April 8, 2009, Genetech, Inc. (the manufacturers of Raptiva) issued a voluntary recall of Raptiva from the U.S. market due to a potential risk of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), brain infections and meningitis. Healthcare professionals have been asked not to prescribe any new patients with Raptiva and to find other options for patients who are currently taking the medication.
If you or a loved one has developed PML, meningits, a brain infection, or another serious condition while taking Raptiva, contact the defective drug lawyers at Gacovino, Lake and Associates for a thorough evaluation of your case. We have helped recover millions of dollars in compensation for the wrongfully injured and may be able to help you.
Raptiva Side Effects
Serious health conditions that have been associated with Raptiva include:
- Bacterial sepsis (blood poisoning)
- Brain infection
- Invasive fungal disease
- Progressive multifocal luekoencephalopathy (a viral disease that inflames the brain’s white matter and is usually fatal)
- Viral meningitis (a condition that causes inflammation of the spinal cord and/or brain).
Former Raptiva patients who develop any combination of the following symptoms should seek emergency medical care to save their lives:
- Cognitive deterioration
- Difficulty speaking
- High fever
- Intense headaches
- Loss of appetite (and thirst)
- Loss of vision
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Sensitivity to light
- Skin rash
- Stiff neck
FDA Raptiva Warnings
Less than six months before the voluntary Raptiva recall (in October 2008), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) mandated that Genetech, Inc. include “black box” warning labels on all Raptiva packaging and medication guides. Black box warnings are the strictest level of FDA warnings, as they alert the public that a medication has the risk of causing fatal side effects.
For more information about the potential health risks of Raptiva, or to discuss your potential case with an experience defective drug attorney,contact us.