Arthritis is a condition that can cause pain, discomfort and loss of function to those who suffer from it. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, arthritis affects 52.5 million adults in the United States — approximately one out of every five adults. Additionally, it is the most common cause of disability within the U.S. Because arthritis can be challenging to live with, drug manufacturers have developed a number of prescription drugs to alleviate the symptoms of the condition.
One drug used to treat arthritis is the prescription medication Enbrel. While Enbrel has received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, it may be linked to dangerous side effects, most notably an increased risk of infection and cancer. If you have been prescribed this dangerous drug and have suffered as a result of taking the drug, our injury lawyers at Gacovino & Lake can help illuminate your rights as the victim.
The Uses of Enbrel
Enbrel is a prescription medication used to treat five different diseases, all of which are long-term inflammatory diseases. Through a self-injection, it can treat rheumatoid arthritis, plaque psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, idiopathic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis.
The generic name for Enbrel is etanercept. The medication is injected under the skin and works by blocking proteins known to contribute to the disease(s). While it can be effective in treating the five conditions listed above, it also can increase the risk of serious disease. Those harmed may explore legal options with our attorneys and may be able to take legal action, depending on the circumstances.
Harm Caused by Enbrel
In order for Enbrel to work effectively to combat arthritis, it affects the body’s immune system. According to a Medication Guide published by the Food and Drug Administration, the two most serious potential side effects are listed below.
- risk of infection, including tuberculosis and other infections caused by fungi, bacteria and viruses.
- and, risk of cancer, particularly in those who start taking Enbrel at an age younger than 18. Those who started taking Enbrel before the age of 18 have developed unusual cancers. Additionally, anyone taking Enbrel may be at a higher risk for developing lymphoma.
The Medication Guide also reports that other side effects of Enbrel include reactivation of the hepatitis B virus in a person who previously contracted the infection, nervous system problems, blood problems, psoriasis, allergic reactions, heart failure and autoimmune reactions, including a lupus-like syndrome and autoimmune hepatitis.
Because interferes with the body’s ability to fight infection, anyone with an existing immune disorder or infection should not take it.
Get Help if you were Harmed By the Drug
If you have taken this drug and suffered any of the side effects listed above as a result, seek the help of our attorneys. The manufacturer of Enbrel, the drug’s distributor, the medical professional who prescribed to you or the pharmacist who filled the prescription may be liable. Liability depends on the details of your case, such as if a doctor erred in prescribing the drug to an individual with a weakened immune system, or a pharmacy erred in filling the prescription.
An attorney can help to get the compensation you need for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more. The lawyers at Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C., know what you’re up against, and are ready to take action now. For guidance through the process of filing your claim and to understand your rights if harmed by a medication, call us today to get started at 800-550-0000 or use our online contact form to set up a consultation.