The arthritis drug Actemra has been linked to hundreds of reports of deaths, but patients were not warned. Experts are investigating the risk of heart attack, stroke, lung disease, pancreatitis, and other severe side effects.
Need a Texas Actemra Lawyer? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged. If you or a loved one was injured by a severe side effect of Actemra, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit.
What is Actemra?
Actemra (tocilizumab) is an injection medication that was approved in January 2010 for adults with Rheumatoid Arthritis, and in May 2017 for adults with Giant Cell Arteritis. Both conditions involve chronic inflammation. Actemra works by reducing substances in the body that cause inflammation. It was developed by Genentech/Roche.
Actemra Linked to Hundreds of Deaths
In June 2017, a STAT investigation reviewed over 500,000 side-effect reports for arthritis drugs, including over 13,500 for Actemra.
They found 1,128 reports of Actemra users who died. Hundreds of Actemra users died of heart failure and other side effects that are on the label for other arthritis drugs — but not Actemra.
“[STAT] found clear evidence that the risks of heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, and other conditions were as high or higher for Actemra patients than for patients taking some competing drugs.”
Actrema competes with other arthritis drugs like Enbrel, Humira, and Remicade, which all carry warnings about cardiovascular side effects. According to experts, “FDA should immediately consider warnings for heart failure and pancreatitis.”
Study Finds 1.5X Higher Risk of Heart Attack
Doctors might believe Actemra is safer, but in a head-to-head study, Actemra patients were 1.5-times more likely to have a stroke or heart failure vs. Enbrel. The label on Enbrel prominently warns that it can cause or exacerbate cardiovascular disease. Actemra does not have similar warnings.
What is the Problem?
Evidence of serious problems with Actemra emerged in 2009, when it was linked to 15 deaths and 221 serious injuries like pneumonia and high fever in a safety study of 5,000 patients in Japan, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Actemra and Vioxx
Vioxx is another arthritis drug that was pulled off the market in 2004 after studies showed that it significantly increased a patient’s risk of heart attack. At least 60,000 deaths are now linked to Vioxx. Like Actemra, deadly side effects of Vioxx were not discovered until after it was sold for several years. Today, most arthritis drugs have warning labels about heart attacks — Actemra does not.
Actemra Side Effects
The most serious side effects of Actemra may include:
- Heart failure
- Heart attack
- Interstitial lung disease
- Gastrointestinal perforation
The most common side effects of Actemra include:
- Upper respiratory tract infections
- Runny nose
- High blood pressure
- Increased ALT levels in blood tests
- Injection-site reactions
Need an Actemra Lawyer in Texas?
Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged.
Collen’s amazing success in the courtroom and well known dedication to his clients has earned him the recognition of his peers as one of The Top Trial Lawyers in Texas.”
The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more than 100 years experience, participation in over 600 jury trials and $260 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact our Texas Actemra lawyers for a free lawsuit review.