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Taxotere containing docetaxel is a chemotherapy drug manufactured and marketed by Sanofi-Aventis, popularly used in United States and other countries and first approved by the U.S. FDA in 1996.
Taxotere acts as a microtubule inhibitor and indicated for treatment of Breast Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Hormone Refractory Prostate Cancer, Gastric Adenocarcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck Cancer but doctors prescribe this drug mainly to treat the breast cancer cases in the U.S making it the most prescribed drug in its class.
Taxotere has disfiguring side effects with permanent hair loss, also called as Alopecia which severely decreased their quality of life, affected body image and caused depression and distress along with other side effects including Cutaneous reactions, Neurologic reactions, Eye disorders.
The company Sanofi was aware by the year 2005 about the results of a trial of GEICAM 9805 which was sponsored by Sanofi in the late 1990s, that 9.2% of women who used the drug Taxotere suffered permanent alopecia. In spite of that Sanofi manufacturer misled the public by falsely assuring them that hair would grow back after chemotherapy.
Complications of Taxotere
- Persistent or permanent hair loss following the completion of chemotherapy treatment with Taxotere
In December 2015 U.S. FDA acknowledged that Taxotere can result in permanent hair loss and issued a warning as "Cases of permanent alopecia have been reported" to be placed on the Taxotere label.
Breast cancer survivors and their families are filing lawsuits against Sanofi manufacturer with claim stating that, the company failed to warn women in the U.S. of the risk as the words "permanent hair loss" or "Alopecia" do not appear in any information published in the U.S. and hid research related to this drug to the toxic side effects.
First lawsuit is been filed recently and till date there have been no large settlements about Taxotere's alleged link to alopecia. The complaints are being handled on an individual basis and no class action lawsuit has yet been filed in the Taxotere litigation.
Evidence to be looked for in potential cases
- Diagnosis and treatment of cancer
- Usage of Taxotere in Medical and Pharmacy Records
- Duration of Taxotere usage in Medical and Pharmacy Records
- Complications and treatment in follow up records
Medical Record Review and claim validation of Taxotere case should take approximately 2 hours in most instances; however, this approximation may vary in cases based on the volume of records.