Do the Risks of Lupron Outweigh its Benefits?

Many patients who have been prescribed Lupron describe their side effects as being devastating, dangerous and some even call the drug poison.

Lupron is used for a variety of purposes. It is prescribed to children to treat early onset puberty, to men who exhibit symptoms of prostate cancer and to women with endometriosis, a painful condition in which the uterine lining grows outside the uterus. Lupron is also used widely off-label as a “down regulator” for women going through IVF treatment. Patients take Lupron in a single dose in the form of daily shots. Lupron Depot is given in an extended release injection lasting 30 days.

At least one expert believes Lupron should be pulled from the market. Dr. John L. Gueriguian, former medical officer with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), stated in a report for a pharmaceutical liability lawsuit on March 19, 2008 that Lupron should not be used.

“After years of use of [Lupron] in a great number of patients, the evidence is clear that TAP [Takeda Abbott Pharmaceuticals] didn’t study [Lupron] adequately before marketing,” Gueriguian states in his report. “After its introduction into the marketplace, TAP did not perform enough long-term studies to detect potential long-term and irreversible side effects of [Lupron], which has been shown, through independent observations and studies, to be able to cause irreversible side effects and permanent severely disabling health problems. Lupron temporarily stops menstruation, but does not eradicate endometriosis for long-term. Lupron should only be limited to six injections for the initial treatment, and a re-treatment should not exceed six injections. Lupron cannot be given more than twelve injections per lifetime.”

He goes on to say that endometriosis can grow back after Lupron treatment ends. Lupron was used to treat endometriosis in females under the age of 18 despite the fact that the drug had only been tested on women over the age of 18 with endometriosis.

Dr. Gueriguian alleges that TAP intentionally suppressed knowledge about the risks associated with Lupron, including bone density loss (leading to permanent disability in some cases), generalized pain, headaches, fluid retention, depression and immune and nervous system problems, including spinal fracture, convulsions and paralysis.

The report concludes that drugs whose risks outweigh their benefit should be pulled from the market.

According to ABC News in Las Vegas, TAP pleaded guilty in 2001 to criminal charges that it violated the Federal Prescription Drug Marketing Act. The pharmaceutical company agreed to pay $875 million to settle claims that it paid kickbacks to doctors to promote Lupron.

The FDA has received more than 12,000 reports of adverse side effects linked to Lupron, which includes more than 1,100 deaths.

If you or a loved one experienced serious side effects after taking Lupron, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages. Feel free to contact one of our experienced Gacovino Lake attorneys at 1-800-246-HURT (4878).

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