Tepezza Hearing Loss MDL Created Before Illinois Judge

As part of an MDL, or multidistrict litigation, a panel of federal judges has decided that all Tepezza claims alleging hearing loss filed throughout the federal court system would be merged for preliminary proceedings before one U.S. District Judge in Illinois.

The Tepezza lawsuits will be consolidated before the U.S. District Judge in the Northern District of Illinois for coordinated pretrial proceedings, according to a transfer order issued on June 2 by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) in response to oral arguments heard late last month.

It is customary for the U.S. JPML to centralize the litigation in complex pharmaceutical litigation where numerous claims are brought by consumers of the same medication or medical product who have all suffered the same or similar injuries. This reduces duplicative discovery into common issues that will arise in all claims, avoids conflicting pretrial rulings, and serves the convenience of specific witnesses and parties who will be required to testify in each of the lawsuits.

The JPML reports that there are already 19 possibly linked proceedings in addition to 18 Tepezza hearing loss litigation filed in five separate jurisdictions. The amount of the case is anticipated to considerably increase over the coming weeks and months as Tepezza hearing loss attorneys continue to examine and submit claims.

As the first drug authorized to treat thyroid eye disease, also known as bulging eyes, which is brought on by hyperthyroidism and linked to Graves' disease and causes inflammation of the eye muscles, eyelids, tear glands, and fatty tissues behind the eye, Horizon Therapeutics introduced Tepezza (teprotumumab-trbw) in January 2020.

Although Tepezza infusions were initially intended to be a specialized treatment with a small market, sales of the medication more than doubled to $1.66 billion in the second year it was available in the United States. As a result, critics have voiced concern that Tepezza was aggressively marketed without fully disclosing all of the potential risks.

Hundreds of former users are now coming forward to claim that Tepezza caused them to have various types of hearing loss adverse effects, including chronic tinnitus and total hearing loss. Many times, even receiving therapy for thyroid eye illness, the issues continue, causing irreparable hearing loss in the users.

A group of plaintiffs requested that all hearing loss lawsuits be transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California for coordinated discovery and pretrial proceedings in a motion to establish a Tepezza MDL earlier this year due to the similar factual and legal issues raised in complaints filed in U.S. District Courts across the country.

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