Chemotherapy Drug Linked To Persistent or Permanent Hair Loss
A diagnosis of breast cancer is devastating. Losing hair temporarily due to chemotherapy adds to the devastation because it publicizes a very personal and private matter that the person is experiencing. When hair loss is permanent, the indelible mark of cancer remains, adversely affecting the feelings of complete physical and emotional recovery.
It is suspected that Sanofi-Aventis hid the side-effect of permanent hair loss in an attempt to boost sales in the highly competitive field of breast cancer medications. Studies show that there are comparable medications that can be used to treat breast cancer that do not have the side-effect of persistent or permanent hair loss, often called alopecia.
When Sanofi-Aventis did not warn oncologists that Taxotere, or Docetaxel, can cause permanent hair loss, it eliminated the potential of a patient’s full consent to treat with this medication. Because, without the knowledge of this side-effect, patients were unable to make informed decisions about their choices of treatment and their management of care.
Over 8,000 lawsuits have been filed against Sanofi-Aventis and other manufacturers by patients who were given Taxotere or Docetaxel to treat their breast cancer and have now been left persistent or permanent hair loss. Several cases are set for trial in 2019.
11/24/15 FDA Label Change – Taxotere to include permanent or irreversible alopecia
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