Another lawsuit has been filed against Sanofi-Aventis after its Taxotere breast cancer drug allegedly caused a South Carolina woman to suffer permanent hair loss.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Taxotere in 1996 for the treatment of breast cancer despite the FDA having recommended its rejection due to toxicity in 1994. Taxotere has since been approved for treating other cancers as well. It is estimated that 75% of the almost three million women in the U.S. with a history of breast cancer have been prescribed Taxotere.
In 2013, a National Cancer Research Institute study found that permanent hair loss was a side effect for 10-15% of Taxotere users. In 2015, the FDA ordered Sanofi Aventis to include permanent hair loss in its list of potential side effects related to the use of Taxotere.
According to the suit, Sanofi-Aventis knew or should have known that Taxotere had the potential to cause permanent hair loss. The suit alleges that the company did not adequately warn about this risk and even concealed the risk from consumers and the medical community by promoting the chemotherapy drug as safe and effective.
In addition, the suit alleges that patients who experience permanent hair loss -- alopecia -- from Taxotere suffer mental anguish and economic damages. A number of lawsuits have been filed against Sanofi-Aventis in recent years for permanent chemotherapy hair loss, alleging that the manufacturer was aware of adverse reports and studies linking Taxotere to permanent hair loss following chemotherapy as far back as its approval date more than 20 years ago.
The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana for a number of claims, including failure to warn, fraudulent misrepresentation and concealment, and negligence. It requests compensatory and punitive damages.
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