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Propecia Lawsuit

Propecia pill bottlePropecia lawsuits allege that published clinical studies show rates of sexual dysfunction in men who use the hair loss drug that may be as high as 39 percent. Worse yet, half of all affected users will never regain normal sexual function, even after cessation of the drug. It is not currently understood exactly how or why Propecia is linked to sexual dysfunction, but researchers at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas are currently looking into how the drug interacts with the body on a molecular level in a forthcoming study titled, “Genetic and Epigenetic Studies on Post-Finasteride Syndrome Patients,” led by Dr. Mohit Khera, M.D.

Propecia injury attorneys at Eisbrouch Marsh can help

As we wait for scientific findings to prove the causal link between Propecia and serious sexual side effects, including erectile dysfunction and diminished libido, personal injury lawsuits are piling up. Men who file a Propecia lawsuit allege that manufacturer Merck did nothing to warn users and their doctors of devastating and permanent risks.

The Propecia lawyers at Eisbrouch Marsh are currently reviewing the cases of men who have suffered sexual dysfunction, depression and/or cognitive impairment after taking Merck’s popular male baldness drug. Thousands of men across the country are refusing to suffer in silence and are fighting for justice against a negligent drug company that so recklessly put profits over public safety. You may be entitled to substantial compensation from Merck for medical expenses, physical & emotional damages, loss of quality of life, and more.  Contact our experienced product liability attorneys today for a complimentary and completely confidential case evaluation.

History of Propecia

Since the drug was first introduced as a treatment for enlarged prostate in the 1980s, finasteride (Propecia) has been prescribed to more than 1 million men in the United States. In 1997, it became an FDA-approved solution for male pattern hair loss, a common condition that affects up to 50 percent of men by age 50. The drug works to prevent hair loss by blocking the 5-alpha reductase enzyme responsible for shrinking hair follicles when combined with testosterone.

In 2008, the Swedish Medical Products Agency required updates regarding the drug’s long-term effects to all 2009 labels distributed in Sweden, and the company updated the label throughout Europe – but not in America. In more recent years, Merck would update the U.S. label nine times, without acknowledging that Propecia sexual side effects persisted in some men for years after the drug was discontinued. It wasn’t until 2011 that U.S. labels reflected the possibility of more serious consequences.

The FDA claims that “less than 2% of men” who stopped taking Propecia did so because they experienced sexual side effects, but Propecia lawyers from Eisbrouch Marsh feel that any number is too many when such blatant negligence and failure to warn were involved. Hundreds of lawsuits had been filed by the time the FDA forced Merck to take responsible action. If you or a loved one have suffered from Propecia’s undeclared risks, you may be entitled to compensation for injuries.

Propecia side effects are the target of lawsuits nationwide

Major problems reported by some Propecia patients include:

  • Decreased libido
  • Erectile dysfunction / impotence
  • Ejaculation disorder
  • Gynecomastia – Male breast enlargement
  • Male breast cancer
  • Testicular pain and hair loss
  • Facial swelling
  • Rashes
  • Depression

Through our extensive contacts with medical professionals, familiarity with relevant medical records, and our knowledge of the law as it pertains to dangerous pharmaceuticals, the Propecia lawyers at Eisbrouch Marsh can help prove that your health issue was related to Propecia use and not caused by some other risk factor.

How common are Propecia side effects?

The FDA reviewed 421 reports of sexual dysfunction from 1998 to 2011 found that the adverse side effects for 59 cases lasted longer than three months after drug discontinuation. The agency noted that one clinical trial of Propecia found 3.8 percent of 945 men had reported one or more adverse sexual side effects from taking the pill. They urged patients with Propecia side effects to contact the FDA MedWatch program at 1-800-332-1088 or visit AccessData.FDA.gov to send a report online.

In 2014, research published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found that 92 percent of men who reported sexual problems while taking Propecia suffered erectile dysfunction, and 69 percent were unable to reach orgasm. George Washington University researchers monitored 54 adult males with chronic Propecia side effects and found that 96 percent of men with dysfunction in sex drive, arousal, erection, and orgasm still had these side effects 14 months later.

Worse yet, many of the men suffered changes in cognition. The same study reported that 11 percent of Propecia users had mild depressive symptoms, 28 percent had moderate depression, and 36 percent suffered severe depression. A significant 44 percent of subjects interviewed had suicidal thoughts.

Dr. Michael Irwig, author of the George Washington University studies, told ABC News, “Our findings make me suspicious that this drug may have done permanent damage to these men. The chances that they will improve? I think it’s lower and lower the longer they have these side effects.”

While he acknowledged that only around 3 percent of the men taking the drug suffered these side effects, he also explained that “it’s still a lot of people – likely several thousand men around the world.”

Filing a Propecia lawsuit

Individuals who suspect they may have been harmed by their use of Propecia may be entitled to compensation for:

  • Past, present, and future medical expenses
  • Lost income
  • Emotional pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of enjoyment in life
  • Permanent disability

In these cases, it is not just the Propecia user who is affected. For instance, an Illinois couple suing Merck as part of a federal MDL contended that the husband’s Propecia sexual dysfunction and cognitive impairment led to the wife’s mental and emotional anguish due to loss of consortium, companionship, and other contributions to their household. She was included as a plaintiff on the lawsuit and sought damages from Merck for the havoc the company’s alleged negligence caused the family.

In Propecia lawsuits, plaintiffs claim Merck:

  • Failed to take “reasonable care” in testing, manufacturing and selling Propecia
  • Concealed known risks of Propecia both during and after its use
  • Failed to adequately warn doctors and their patients of the health risks
  • Inadequately labeled the drug prior to April 2011

Propecia lawsuit history

Propecia lawyers at Eisbrouch Marsh have seen finasteride lawsuits skyrocket. In April 2013, just over 400 lawsuits against Merck were consolidated in NY federal court under Justice Gleeson. By July 2014, this number nearly doubled to 739 actions pending in MDL 2331.

The MDL is still in the pre-trial phase of information gathering, with settlements or bellwether trials expected to follow. In addition to the federally filed lawsuits, there are also 350 Propecia drug injury lawsuits consolidated in a New Jersey MCL before Judge Jessica R. Mayer in Middlesex County.

Benefits of hiring a Propecia lawyer from Eisbrouch Marsh

A Propecia attorney from Eisbrouch Marsh can help you by:

  • Assessing your case to see if you may have a chance at securing a Propecia settlement or jury award
  • Consolidating medical records that show a link between Propecia use and your symptoms
  • Consulting with medical professionals who can rule out other potential causes of your symptoms
  • Collecting evidence to demonstrate that Merck knew of risks associated with their product but did nothing
  • Representing you in settlement talks or court hearings
  • Keeping you informed of progress being made every step of the way
  • Pursuing the maximum possible compensation, as allowed by law

Best of all, our legal counsel is completely free, unless you obtain a settlement or jury award. In that case, you pay a prearranged percentage of your compensation for all legal services rendered. An experienced team of winning personal injury attorneys at Eisbrouch Marsh await your call at 1-800-RESULTS.

  1. Washington Post – FDA Issues Warning on Prostate Drugs http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-checkup/post/fda-issues-warning-on-prostate-drugs/2011/06/09/AG0IHfNH_blog.html
  2. FDA – Drug Safety Communication http://www.fda.gov/drugs/drugsafety/ucm258314.htm
  3. JPML – Pending Dockets http://www.jpml.uscourts.gov/sites/jpml/files/Pending_MDL_Dockets_By_District-July-15-2014.pdf
  4. Merck - Propecia (Finasteride), http://www.propecia.com/finasteride/propecia/consumer/index.jsp
  5. Wiley Online Library - Persistent Sexual Side Effects of Finasteride: Could They Be Permanent? http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1743-6109.2012.02846.x/abstract
  6. Silverthorne, S. (2004, November 22). Side Effects: The Case of Propecia. Harvard Business School. Retrieved from http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/4503.html
  7. Bloomberg - Merck’s Baldness Drug Linked to Sex Concerns After Use http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-12/merck-s-baldness-drug-linked-to-sex-concerns-after-use.html
  8. Medical News Today - Propecia (finasteride) Permanent Sexual Dysfunction Risk http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/247858.php
  9. ABC News - For Some Men, Propecia's Sexual Side Effects May Be Long-lasting http://abcnews.go.com/Health/baldness-drug-propecia-long-lasting-possibly-permanent-sexual/story?id=16758123&singlePage=true
  10. CBS News - Study of ex-Propecia users with sexual side effects finds increased risk for depression, suicidal thoughts
  11. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/study-of-ex-propecia-users-with-sexual-side-effects-finds-increased-risk-for-depression-suicidal-thoughts/
  12. CBS News - FDA adds sexual side effects warning to baldness drug Propecia http://www.cbsnews.com/news/fda-adds-sexual-side-effects-warning-to-baldness-drug-propecia/