Merck’s marquis hair loss prevention drug Propecia has fallen upon some hard times. What was once a billion dollar annual income has steadily descended to around $400 million dollars and continues to fall upon news and a string of studies showing that it causes erectile dysfunction. Not a promising prospect for a man who is already self-conscious about his hair loss.
However, after spending years on the market, Propecia is finally proving that it not only causes erectile dysfunction while the patient is on the drug, but some studies are showing that it could last for months after stopping drug and could in some cases become a permanent condition.
Now the company has pulled the zippy Propecia website hawking the drug and showing happy guys with full heads of hair. Instead the website displays a one page information portal that leads to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website, which, with only minimal clicking, will tell you that the main ingredient in Propecia, finasteride, has a chance of causing much worse than erectile dysfunction.
Some early studies suggest that it may cause male breast cancer and prostate cancer. You see, the bad thing is that finasteride was initially intended to treat prostate cancer, however, it also resulted in hair growth. It seems now all good things must come to an end, for both global conglomerate Merck and men seeking to prevent hair loss and still be able to get an erection.
This whole unfortunate situation has resulted in hundreds of lawsuits around the country of angry men who say that Merck did not provide the proper warnings.
Lawyers were hoping this would get done in 2011, but it looks like 2012 is the year for the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) will rule on whether federal Propecia lawsuits are consolidated into a class action lawsuit to be presided over by a single judge in a central location.
The main allegations proposed by plaintiffs in Propecia lawsuits are around the sexual side effects. Generally, they seek damages over a rather wide range due to everything from pain and suffering to quality of life. Though many of these men have been waiting months, some years, to find justice, there is a lot of confidence that the MDL will be granted.
In fact, Merck has already requested that the potential MDL be headquartered in New Jersey, the company’s principal state of residence. Other venue options include New York and right here in Washington State, spurring on potentially one of the largest drug lawsuits ever tried in the state.
Are You Eligible to File a Propecia Lawsuit?
One of the reasons why Washington is being considered for the MDL is because a lot of the lawsuits are on the West coast and were started right here in Washington State. A victim of the side effects of Propecia has suffered erectile dysfunction directly related to their use of Propecia and thus has suffered a lowered quality of life due to the side effects.
Propecia lawsuits both at the state and federal levels claim that Merck knew, or should have known, about the side effects associated with their drug, and allege that the company failed to warn consumers of the associated risks. The main purpose of an MDL is to conserve resources, avoid duplicate discovery, and prevent the possibility of conflicting court rulings. Many ask the simple question of how many men would knowingly exchange Propecia erectile dysfunction and other Propecia sexual side effects for a fuller head of hair?
How do I File a Lawsuit Against Merck?
Though no individual is barred from filing their own lawsuit, it is highly advisable to seek an experienced law firm with a proven track record of success in defective drug litigation. Phillips Law Firm has helped dozens of victims and their loved ones who have been seriously effected by the side effects of various defective drugs.
These large MDL lawsuits can be tricky to navigate. Phillips’ team will conduct the investigation on your behalf and file the proper paperwork in order to move forward with a Propecia lawsuit. With the details in place and all of the paperwork collected, the attorneys will then have the tools they need to be able to represent you in the best way possible wherever the MDL may reside.
What is the Next Step in the MDL?
On March 29, 2012, San Diego is scheduled to host the next hearing for Propecia MDL. If the federal panel elects to consolidate Propecia lawsuits into an MDL, then a venue will be designated and most likely Merck will dispute it right away. Delay is the name of the game when hundreds of millions of dollars are at stake.
In most cases, the plaintiff should expect this process to take a long time and hearings to start no sooner than 2013. Plaintiffs should expect MDLs to be tested through a series of bellwether lawsuits that test the strength of the majority of the common lawsuit’s evidence and claims. Most of these bellwether lawsuits are the earliest suits filed and have been waiting for a long time to be tried so if you are filing now, it is unlikely your suit will be one of the lawsuits to be chosen as a bellwether case.
Contact Us of fill out the Free Propecial Case Evaluation
There are indications that Merck may not have given the proper indication of the severity of these side effects. With oversight from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), it is up to the company to provide information of any serious side effects. Merck may have known about the side effects, but neglected to properly inform customers or the FDA.
The serious consequences of Propecia are not worth stopping hair loss. Please consult your physician for further questions.
If you or a loved one are taking Propecia or any other derivative of Finasteride it is important that you contact legal council that has experience in protecting patients from giant pharmaceutical companies. Call Phillips Law Firm for a consultation on your legal options.