Yet another product liability lawsuit has been filed against Merck and Bayer Healthcare alleging that side effects of the popular antibiotic Avelox left one woman with an irreversible form of nerve damage known as peripheral neuropathy. The Avelox lawsuit was filed by Stephanie Heller in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, and joins a growing number of complaints brought over peripheral neuropathy side effects of Avelox and another drug that belongs to the same class of antibiotics, called Levaquin. If you believe you have been harmed by side effects of Avelox, contact a reputable Avelox lawyer today to explore your possible compensation options.
According to allegations raised in Heller’s Avelox lawsuit, she was prescribed the antibiotic drug in April 2013, for use over the course of ten days. Four days into the treatment however, she began experiencing pain and weakness throughout her body, and her doctor indicated that she should discontinue the treatment. Even after she stopped using the antibiotic though, Heller continued to experience pain and cramping in her legs, and the problems progressed over the next few days, resulting in weakness in her ankles and wrists, in addition to persistent tingling and vibrating sensations that made it difficult for her to engage in normal daily tasks, such as sleeping, standing, walking or driving.
In her lawsuit, Heller states that she was diagnosed with nerve damage from Avelox, which is characterized by damage to the nerves that carry signals between the spinal cord and the rest of the body, impairing things like movement and sensation. Symptoms of this type of nerve damage, known as peripheral neuropathy, typically include pain, numbness, weakness, burning, tingling, and sensitivity to light touches, motion and temperature in the arms and legs. According to Heller, she continues to suffer from debilitating symptoms of peripheral neuropathy, which she says have caused her considerable pain and suffering, and are diminishing her overall quality of life.
Avelox belongs to a class of antibiotic drugs known as fluoroquinolones, which are some of the most widely used antibiotics in the country. However, serious concerns have been raised in recent years about the safety of Avelox and other fluoroquinoline antibiotics, and in August 2013, the FDA required updated warnings about the risk of peripheral neuropathy associated with Avelox, Levaquin and similar antibiotic medications. Previous warnings had suggested that nerve damage from Avelox and Levaquin was rare and typically resolved when use of the medication was discontinued. However, new information suggests that peripheral neuropathy complications may occur more frequently than previously thought, and may result in permanent nerve damage injuries.
Over the past year, a number of Avelox and Levaquin lawsuits have been filed on behalf of former users of the antibiotics, who claim that the makers of the controversial drugs failed to provide consumers and the medical community with adequate warnings about the risk of peripheral neuropathy associated with their medications. If you or a loved one has experienced permanent nerve damage from Avelox or another potentially dangerous pharmaceutical drug, our consumer advocates at the Consumer Justice Foundation can help. We are committed to protecting the rights of consumers harmed by defective products, and can help put you in touch with an experienced Avelox attorney today.