Diane K. Eccles is an Oregon resident who has filed a lawsuit against the makers of Levaquin after she developed a tendon rupture while taking the controversial antibiotic. She filed her lawsuit on December 23, 2011 and has joined in the current Levaquin multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota.
Eccles’s case is different in that she is claiming to have developed a tendon rupture in her shoulder. (Most plaintiffs claim ruptures in their feet or legs.) Eccles started taking Levaquin back in May 2008, and within a few months of taking the drug she was diagnosed with a tendon rupture in her shoulder after started experiencing pain and swelling in the area. That diagnosis came on October 24, 2008.
Levaquin has long been linked to tendon ruptures, and there are numerous studies to verify Eccles’ claim. Eccles has agreed to allow her case to be joined with the growing Levaquin MDL that is currently taking place in Minnesota, with Judge John R. Tunheim presiding. This MDL includes more than 1,600 lawsuits that are all claiming that plaintiffs suffered tendon ruptures after taking Levaquin — and this number of plaintiffs rises continually. This MDL lists drug giant Johnson & Johnson as the defendant, along with Ortho-McNeil-Janssen. Both companies have been accused of failing to properly warn the public and healthcare professionals of the tendon rupture dangers linked to Levaquin use.
There have been three Levaquin trials so far with a fourth underway. At least one plaintiff, John Schedin, has been awarded financial compensation for his tendon ruptures. Studies have shown that Levaquin increases a patient’s chances of developing tendon ruptures and that the drug should not be taken by seniors aged 65 and older who are also taking corticosteroids since the likelihood of developing a tendon rupture increases even more. The problem with this is that many plaintiffs have claimed that seniors are the very people at which the manufacturers seem to aim their marketing efforts.