FDA Ban on Darvocet Leads to Explosion of Lawsuits
Following the November 2010 FDA ban on Darvocet and related medications, many victims of Darvocet side effects like overdose and heart problems came forward to file a Darvocet or Darvon lawsuit. Federal cases were consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the Eastern District of Kentucky on August 16, 2011, and since that time the number of cases joining the MDL continues to grow.
FDA ban on Darvocet follows cardiovascular study
The active ingredient in Darvon and Darvocet—propoxyphene—has been linked to several side effects over the years, including addiction, overdose, and heart problems like arrhythmia and heart attack. It took decades, however, for the FDA ban on Darvocet. Though the product was initially approved in the 1970s, it wasn’t until nearly 40 years later that the risks of the painkiller were finally deemed to be greater than the benefits.
The U.K. announced a ban on propoxyphene in 2005, and several times the U.S. consumer group Public Citizen petitioned the FDA to do the same, but it wasn’t until after they filed a lawsuit against the agency in 2008 that the FDA finally moved to look into the safety issues—in 2009. A subsequent advisory committee meeting voted against continuing to market propoxyphene, and in July the FDA required updated warnings, but it wasn’t until results from a heart study showed the drug raised the risk of abnormal heart rhythms that the FDA demanded a Darvocet recall and the FDA ban on Darvocet.
MDL booms after FDA ban on Darvocet
Though only 17 plaintiffs who had filed a Darvocet or Darvon lawsuit were involved in the original consolidation into MDL, a recent estimate shows nearly 90 plaintiffs have now joined the proceedings in the Eastern District of Kentucky. Several were recently transferred at the end of September from Maryland. And the growth is expected to continue.
The benefit of MDL in a Darvocet or Darvon lawsuit is that the process is streamlined and settlements may come more quickly. The chances of duplicate discovery and contradictory rulings is reduced with just one judge overseeing all cases, though each case will still remain an individual Darvocet or Darvon lawsuit.
Challenges facing a Darvocet lawyer
Though there are numerous adverse event reports concerning Darvocet side effects, as well as scientific studies showing connections between the drug and side effects, a Darvocet lawyer is still likely to have his work cut out for him in proving the manufacturers Eli Lilly and Xanodyne were to blame. Of particular difficulty will be those cases where the patient had a medical history of mental illness or cardiovascular problems.
A legitimate diagnosis of the alleged Darvocet injury, along with supportive medical records of follow-up therapies will help to build a successful case. So far, bellwether trials have not yet been scheduled in Darvocet MDL.