Additional plaintiffs have joined a Levaquin lawsuit filed in New York amid claims that they weren’t properly warned of the dangers of taking the antibiotic and developed tendon ruptures as a result. Dozens of plaintiffs now have filed claims against the drug’s manufacturer, Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a division of the troubled Johnson & Johnson.
Levaquin is the controversial fluoroquinolone antibiotic that has been linked to a higher number of tendon ruptures than any other antibiotic medication, especially for patients who are over the age of 60. In addition, if patients are taking corticosteriod therapy, have an even higher chance of suffering from a tendon injury. The lawsuits are based on the complaint that the makers of the drug didn’t properly warn the plaintiffs of the risks associated with it. The attorneys presenting the case against Levaquin also are claiming that the packaging actually hides the worst tendon rupture effects in the middle of the lesser effects just to make it harder to catch.
Finally, the lawsuit claims that Johnson & Johnson downplayed just how much tendon damage occurred in the drug’s trial studies. It took a couple of years to have the Levaquin labels changed to include the excessive warnings in a plainly visible manner, which occurred in 2007. However, in 2008, the FDA issued a black box warning against the drug’s tendon rupture side effects and now the warning is included with the severe side effects listed and not hidden with the less serious side effects. If that’s not a case of too little too late, nothing is.