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FDA Advisory Panel to Review Risks Associated with Taking Fosamax

December 31, 1969

This week, a panel of outside advisors to the US Food and Drug Administration are getting together to examine the risks linked to long-term use of bisphosphonate drugs. Our Orange County, California Fosamax lawyers will be watching these developments closely.

Fosamax, which is a popular osteoporosis drug, is made by Merck. In recent years, however, there has been growing concern that using this medication can lead to actual bone problems, including femur fractures and jawbone deterioration.

In the background document released this week by the FDA in advance of the advisory panel meeting, it was revealed that some officials are recommending that women use Fosamax for no more than five years--especially considering that most benefits from the medication occur within the first three years. "Drug holidays," which involves taking breaks from a medication, will also be considered. The also document notes that although there is currently no concrete evidence that bisphosphonates cause jaw injuries and femur fractures, such outcomes could not be ruled out especially because they are so had to study.

The FDA advisory panel is expected to make recommendations on regulatory actions to protect consumers. Boniva, Atelvia, and Actonel are among the other bisphosphonates that the FDA advisory panel will evaluate.

More than 1600 Fosamax fracture lawsuits have been filed by against Merck consumers complaining of serious bone injuries after taking the medication. In Los Angeles County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, and Orange County, California, our Anaheim dangerous drug lawyers would like to offer you a free consultation to determine whether you have a case.

Among those suing Merck for products liability is Linda Secrest, who now has osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ). This is another bellwether case involving Fosamax. A bellwether trial is one that is expected to gage future trends related to a specific type of litigation. Numerous plaintiffs that have filed complaints on the grounds of the same claim/theory are usually a factor.

Although a District Judge recently ruled that Secrest can move ahead with her design defect claim against the drug maker, she will not be able to bring forward her claim that Merck did not warn about possible complications. She is also not going to be allowed to pursue punitive damages.

Between 2005 and 2009, about 5.1 to 5.7 million people were given prescriptions for Fosamax in the US. The majority of patients where in the over 55 age range.

Kenan used Fosamax between 1998 and 2005. In addition to ONJ, she claims that taking the drug caused her to suffer injuries to her oral cavity and jaw.

It is important that you worth with an Anaheim products liability law firm that is not afraid (and knows how to) pursue compensation from a drug manufacturer. Our Orange County, California dangerous drug lawyers know how upsetting it can be to discover that your health occurred because of the medication that your doctor prescribed.

F.D.A. Staff: 5 Years May Be Enough for Bone Drugs, The New York Times, September 9, 2011

Read the FDA's Background Document for the Advisory Committee,

FDA to Review Safety of Osteoporosis Drugs as Lawsuit Begins in Bellwether Trial, ABA Journal, September 6, 2011

Judge narrows benchmark Fosamax case vs. Merck, Reuters, August 31, 2011

Related Web Resources:

Fosamax, Web MD


Osteonecrosis of the Jaw

More Blog Posts:
Does Fosamax Increase the Risk of Esophageal Cancer?, California Injury Lawyers, July 31, 2011

Federal Fosamax Lawsuits Over Femur Fractures to be Coordinated Under Multidistrict Litigation, California Injury Lawyers, July 29, 2011

Fosamax: FDA to Form Advisory Committee to Explore Benefits and Risks of Long-Term Bisphosphonate Treatment of Osteoporosis, California Injury Lawyers, July 24, 2011

We are here to help our clients obtain California products liability compensation for the negligence of others. Contact Howard Law, PC today.