Many who have had cancer and were treated with the drug Taxotere are now filing lawsuits against its manufacturer for the harm it caused them.
If you have or have had cancer and Taxotere was part of your treatment, you need to know about its possible dangers.
What is Taxotere?
Taxotere (docetaxel) is a chemotherapy drug manufactured by Sanofi-Aventis. The FDA approved Taxotere in 1996 for treatment of several cancers including:
- breast cancer
- advanced stomach cancer
- non-small cell lung cancer
- metastatic prostate cancer
- head and neck cancer
It has also been tested in the treatment of:
- ovarian cancer
- small cell lung cancer
- bladder cancer
- pancreatic cancer
- soft tissue sarcoma
Taxotere acts to slow down or stop cancerous cells from multiplying. Unlike other chemotherapy drugs, Taxotere is administered intravenously every 3–4 weeks instead of weekly. This has made it more preferable for patients and doctors.
Taxotere Side Effects and Complications
Like other cancer treatments, Taxotere may cause many common side effects. The FDA noted the following potential common side effects when they approved the drug.
- Low blood cell count
- Bone, muscle or joint pain
- Peripheral neuropathy (numbness in your fingers and toes)
- Mouth or throat sores
- Fatigue and weakness
- Fluid retention
- Hair loss
Although the FDA and the manufacturer warned of these potential side effects, many cancer survivors and recent studies have complained that the company downplayed side effects, namely hair loss.
While hair loss is common during chemotherapy, hair typically starts growing back 3–6 months after completing treatments. But, many cancer patients treated with Taxotere have reported permanent hair loss (alopecia). Complaints and studies have shown that some patients have suffered permanent hair loss as much as 3–10 years after completion of their cancer treatment. The hair loss could affect all body hair, including eyelashes, eyebrows, and pubic hair.
Sanofi-Aventis did not warn the public that Taxotere could cause permanent hair loss until December 2015 and only because the FDA ordered them to do so. But, records show that the manufacturer may have known about the drug’s potential to cause permanent hair loss as early as 1998.
Thousands of women have filed lawsuits against Sanofi-Aventis. They claim the drug manufacturer was negligent in its design, manufacture, and marketing of Taxotere. They fault the manufacturer for not properly warning doctors and patients about Taxotere’s potential to cause permanent hair loss.
If Sanofi-Aventis is found liable in a lawsuit, they could be responsible to provide compensation for the following losses:
- Medical and psychological counseling expenses
- Mental and emotional distress caused by permanent disfigurement
- Loss of earnings and lost earning potential
- Diminished quality of life
The compensation awarded depends on the circumstances of each case.
If you were treated with Taxotere and have suffered permanent hair loss, you could be eligible for compensation. Contact us for a free evaluation and let our attorneys see if we can get you the compensation you deserve.