Levofloxacin, marketed as the brand name Levaquin by Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceuticals and Johnson and Johnson, is used to treat infections such as pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, and sinus, urinary tract, kidney, prostate, and skin infections. Levaquin is a member of a class of synthetic antibiotics called fluoroquinolones. It works by killing the bacteria that cause infections.
From late 1997 through the end of 2005, the FDA received 262 reports of tendon ruptures, 258 cases of tendonitis and 274 cases of other tendon disorders in patients using fluoroquinolones. The consumer advocacy group Public Citizen argues that a tiny fraction of cases are typically reported, meaning that the number actual tendon injuries could well be much higher. If you have used Levaquin and suffered a tendon rupture following your use of Levaquin, please read on for facts about the product and the litigation surrounding it.
Facts about Levaquin:
- In 2004, the FDA requested new warning labels to be added to all of the Fluoroquinolones, including levofloxacin, regarding peripheral neuropathy (irreversible nerve damage), tendon damage, heart problems (prolonged QT Interval / Torsades de pointes), Pseudomembranous colitis, Rhabdomyolysis (muscle wasting), Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, as well as concurrent usage of NSAIDs contributing to the severity of these reactions.
- In 2008, the FDA required all manufacturers of fluoroquinolone antibiotics, including the manufacturers of Levaquin, to place a black box warning to alert patients about the risk of tendon ruptures when using the drug.
- On June 13, 2008, a Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) granted the Plaintiffs’ motion to centralize individual and class action lawsuits involving Levaquin in the District of Minnesota over objection of Defendants, Johnson and Johnson / Ortho McNeil.
- On December 8, 2010 Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay the plaintiff $1.1 million in punitive damages, as well as compensatory damages in the amount of $700,000, in the first Levaquin MDL case to go to trial.
If you have had Levaquin injections and have suffered from severe tendon damage, including Achilles tendon ruptures, find out how Johnson//Becker PLLC can help you. Fill out our case review form here on our website and submit it for a free consultation.