Valsartan Lawsuit Attorneys
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People who take angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) for their high blood pressure rely on their medication for healthy lives. When they lose access to their medication (or medication stops being safe), it puts them at serious risk. In 2018, the FDA issued a news release that a manufacturing impurity called NDMA, a "probable human carcinogen," was found in several medications containing valsartan. Valsartan is a component of numerous generic ARBs, meaning it was issued by numerous pharmaceutical companies.
Companies with recalled valsartan products include the following:
- Teva Pharmaceuticals labeled as Major Pharmaceuticals
- Teva Pharmaceuticals USA labeled as Actavis
- Prinston Pharmaceutical Inc. labeled as Solco Healthcare LLC
- Remedy Repack
- A-S Medication Solutions LLC
- Bryant Ranch Prepack Inc
- H J Harkins Company Inc.
- Proficient Rx LP
- Northwind Pharmaceuticals
- Camber Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
- NuCare Pharmaceuticals Inc.
For thousands of people who depend on medications containing valsartan, they were left in a terrible dilemma: continue taking their heart medication at the risk of getting cancer...or stop taking their medication at the risk of suffering heart failure? While some patients switched to brand-name medications, not everyone had the same option. More to the point, the FDA isn't sure how patients are going to be affected if they already took the NDMA-contaminated drug.
Want to learn more about the recall? Read our blog about it.
What Are ARBs and What Do they Do?
Valsartan is part of a family of drugs known as angiotensin II receptor blockers. ARBs are used to treat hypertension and are frequently prescribed to those who’ve recently suffered from a heart attack or heart failure. These drugs enlarge blood vessels to reduce blood pressure and help the heart function better. Valsartan is an ARB that was created by Novartis under the name Diovan. The patent for the drug expired in 2012, triggering the release of the variants of valsartan available today. Now, over 20 companies produce products containing valsartan.
Potential Effects of NDMA May Include Liver Cancer
Dr. Erin Michos, the associate director of preventative cardiology at Johns Hopkins Medicine, says that the cancer risk of NDMA is currently unknown, although the FDA has classified it as probably cancer-causing. The amount of NDMA would play a role in how it affects each person. She has also noted that the dangers of NDMA are only known in laboratory conditions. When rats were exposed to NDMA, the side effects included liver scarring and liver tumors. Michos believes that the quantities patients ingested may not match the quantities ingested in laboratory conditions. Regardless, people have reason to be concerned about their valsartan intake.
Those exposed to NDMA may experience the following:
- Liver cancer
- Liver damage
- Kidney cancer
- Kidney damage
- Colorectal cancer
- Gastric cancer
What Should You Do if You Use a Recalled Valsartan Product?
According to the FDA, those taking valsartan should continue to do so until they receive a replacement from a doctor or pharmacist. A pharmacist might be able to provide you with a valsartan product that wasn’t recalled and is a suitable replacement for your medication. Notably, not all valsartan products are contaminated with NDMA. If you’re uncertain if your drug was part of a recall, contact your doctor immediately to find out.
Have Liver Damage? Call Handler, Henning & Rosenberg Today.
If you suffered serious health consequences because of taking valsartan? Did you experience health problems after the valsartan recall? Then you may be able to fight to have your medical care, lost income, and other damages paid for by those responsible. NDMA only appeared in valsartan medications because the manufacturing process changed—introducing impurities into the process.
Handler, Henning & Rosenberg LLC are experienced defective drug attorneys who know how to hold pharmaceutical corporations accountable. Since 1922, our firm has fought for Pennsylvania residents against large companies and insurers, helping them get the money they needed for medical care and more. We know what valsartan patients need. We'll fight for them to they get it.
Write down your questions and call (888) 498-3023 for a free consultation with a member of our legla team. We can review your legal options together and help you get your life back.