Many individuals suffer from hypogonadism or low testosterone, which is usually due to the body’s failure to produce enough hormones whether it is the fault of the brain, pituitary gland, or the testicles. There are a variety of products available via prescriptions that are meant to treat hypogonadism.
These products are offered in a number of different forms including:
Typically, once an individual begins testosterone therapy, they will have to use it for the rest of their lives with regular checkups with their physician.
As with the regular use of many medical devices or drugs, there are risks. Some studies have linked the use of testosterone products to severe side effects including:
- Heart attack or myocardial infarction
- Pulmonary embolism
- Mini-strokes or TIA
Serious side effects have prompted the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to warn the public of the potential risks and dangers associated with the use of some testosterone products, and that they should only be used by patients who are truly suffering from hypogonadism. But these warnings have not gone far enough or have come too late.
Low Testosterone Lawsuit
Thousands of men are now pursuing lawsuits against the pharmaceutical companies that manufacture, sell, and advertise these injury-causing testosterone products, and some juries have listened.
In fact, as recently as October 2017, an Illinois federal jury ordered drug company AbbVie to pay $140,000 in compensatory damages and punitive damages totaling $140 million to a plaintiff who suffered a heart attack after using AndroGel for several months.
Testosterone Therapy and Testosterone Products
A man’s testosterone levels spike during puberty but then tend to drop an average of one percent each year after the age of thirty. Oftentimes, the reduction or lack of this essential sex hormone can result in a number of health issues, including loss of muscle mass, osteoporosis, loss of coordination or sarcopenia, and psychological issues.
Low testosterone or hypogonadism has primary and secondary causes. Although decreased testosterone levels are usually a normal sign of aging in men, other individuals experience the decline due to disorders of the brain, pituitary gland, or the testicles that cause hypogonadism. Primary causes are those that originate from a problem in the testicles. Primary hypogonadism causes include abnormal testicle development, mumps infections, undescended testicles, pituitary gland dysfunction from too much iron in the blood, injury to the testicles, and cancer treatment.
In secondary hypogonadism, the testicles typically are normal, but they do not function properly because of a problem with the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland. Inflammatory diseases, certain medications, HIV/AIDS, obesity, other illnesses, and aging are all considered secondary causes of hypogonadism.
The Root Cause for Hypogonadism
For hypogonadism that is caused by a testicular problem, many physicians use testosterone replacement therapy. Testosterone therapy can prevent bone loss and restore muscle strength, but it can also increase sex drive, erectile function, energy, and a sense of wellbeing. Testosterone therapy come in a variety of forms including gels like AndroGel and Testim, injections such as Depo-Testosterone, skin patches like Androderm, pills, creams, or implants.
Although most testosterone products are available only through a prescription, some of them are sold over the counter.
There are a number of different gel preparations that are available on the market today, and there are several ways in which to apply them. Depending on the brand, you can apply the gel with an applicator or pump under your armpit or on your thighs, or you can rub the gel into your skin on your shoulder and upper arm. AndroGel is applied through the latter process. As the testosterone gel dries, your body absorbs the testosterone through your skin.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved AndroGel 1% in 2000 for use as testosterone replacement therapy for men who have low testosterone because of disorders that cause hypogonadism.
AndroGel with a strength of 1.62% was approved in 2011. However, many individuals who do not have low testosterone due to these disorders still choose to use products like AndroGel because the companies that manufacture the testosterone therapies market them as a cure-all for everything, saying the therapies improve anything from low sex drives to depressed moods.
In other words, these companies take advantage of those who might be insecure about their T- levels and claim that testosterone therapy will increase strength, vitality, sex drive, and overall better quality of life.
Was AndroGel and Testosterone Therapy Over-Marketed by the Pharmaceutical Industry?
Pharmaceutical companies have thus convinced thousands of men that they are suffering from “Low T.” But statistics reveal that as many as half of all men who are prescribed testosterone therapies have never been diagnosed with hypogonadism, and nearly twenty-five percent of these men never even underwent blood tests before the therapy was prescribed to them.
The Benefits and Safety of Using Testosterone Therapy
The benefits and safety of using testosterone therapy for purposes other than treating low testosterone associated with hypogonadism have not been established, and in fact, testosterone replacement therapies can cause a whole host of health complications that may not be worth the benefits of the therapy. Despite this, pharmaceutical companies continue to manufacture and market testosterone replacement products to men who have low testosterone due simply to the fact that they are aging.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy Lawsuit
Due to the serious side effects associated with the use of testosterone replacement therapy, many individuals have sought compensation from the pharmaceutical companies that manufacture and sell the drugs.
The majority of the lawsuits have alleged that the drug companies:
- Did not investigate fully the safety and the risks associated with testosterone replacement therapy.
- Failed to or did not adequately warn physicians and patients of the increased risks of serious cardiovascular side effects, including stroke and heart attack.
- Marketed the drugs in such a way that individuals who don’t necessarily need to use the therapies were targeted and the companies did not provide adequate warnings about the serious health risks that are linked to use of testosterone replacement therapy.
Androgel Lawsuit Update 2017
In June of 2017, the first bellwether trial began where the plaintiff alleged that AbbVie, the drug company that manufactures AndroGel was liable for the heart failure he experienced after using the product for several months. The plaintiff’s case ended in a mistrial because their attorney became ill, but a second trial against AbbVie began in July 2017. After a three-week trial, an Illinois federal judge in the case recognized that AbbVie was funding advertisements that misrepresented what AndoGel is meant to treat and thus ordered that the plaintiff receive $150 million in punitive damages.
Low Testosterone Class Action Lawsuit
While there is no class action lawsuit, the Multidistrict Litigation consolidates all the federal lawsuits that allege injuries from AndroGel and other pharmaceutical companies with products to help with low testosterone, including Eli Lilly and Co., and Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. since nearly identical complaints have been filed against them. These AndroGel lawsuits have also become part of the Multidistrict Litigation which is centralized in the Northern District of Illinois.
Androgel Lawsuit Status
The second bellwether trial against AbbVie began in early October 2017. In this case, an Illinois federal jury ordered that AbbVie pay compensatory damages to the plaintiff in the amount of $140,000 and punitive damages totaling $140 million. The plaintiff asserted that AbbVie was aware of the potential cardiovascular risks associated with using the product AndroGel, but that AbbVie failed to warn consumers about these possible dangers. This case is thus the second verdict in the Multidistrict Litigation over testosterone replacement therapies manufactured by AbbVie and other pharmaceutical companies.
Androgel Testosterone Settlement Amount
In 2017, AbbVie was ordered by a judge to pay over $150 million in punitive damages. In the following years, over 4,200 AndroGel lawsuits were settled, but they did not publicly disclose the settlement amounts.
Why Should I File a Lawsuit Against Androgel?
By some reports, testosterone replacement therapies are set to become a five-billion-dollar industry. The sales of testosterone patches, gels, pills, and injections have increased significantly in recent years to the point that they are probably being overprescribed to patients. But as mentioned above, the FDA has only approved testosterone therapy for those who have severe testosterone deficiency or hypogonadism.
In the United States, consumers have a right to safe and reliable products. Many companies try to ensure that their products are safe, but even after taking necessary precautions, some products can still end up posing risks to consumers and might end up being recalled. While recalling a product is usually a voluntary process, there are times when a company will deny that their product causes harm and in these instances, if the product harms you, you may have to file a lawsuit.
The Types of Damages That You May Be Entitled to Receive Compensation
If you’ve suffered an injury after using testosterone replacement therapy such as AndroGel or others including, Androderm, Testim, Axiron, Delatestryl, Bio-T-Gel, Fortesta, Dep-Testosterone, Testopel, or Striant, you may be entitled to damages including:
1. Compensation for any medical bills you’ve incurred as a result of your injury or illness, including expenses associated with diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, and follow-up care.
2. Compensation for lost wages if you’ve missed work or cannot work due to your injury or illness.
3. Compensation for pain and suffering or other emotional distress that you have experienced due to your injury or illness.
4. Compensation if a family member has died due to an injury or illness that was caused by the use of testosterone replacement therapy. In these situations, the decedent’s family has a right to file a wrongful death suit to collect some of the damages listed above as well as other costs and expenses.
Holding the Drug Companies Responsible
In addition to economic and non-economic damages, it is important to remember that by taking legal action, you are also helping to hold drug companies accountable for manufacturing, selling, and marketing defective and dangerous products that are thereafter used by unsuspecting or unaware consumers.
What You Should Expect After Filing an AndroGel Injury Lawsuit
Claims filed against large pharmaceutical companies can be complicated and typically take a while to reach a settlement or verdict at trial. In fact, it might be months or even years before a case is resolved. Many AndroGel cases come down to:
- Why an individual was being treated with testosterone replacement therapy
- Whether an individual was educated about the side effects and risks associated with the use of the testosterone therapy
- How the product was marketed to the individual
- Whether the manufacturing company sufficiently studied the benefits and risks associated with the use of the drug and whether they provided adequate warnings about the risks
When an experienced AndroGel Injury Lawyer takes on your case, they will take the time to review your records, investigate your claim, retain and consult with expert witnesses, and collect other relevant and important evidence to prove your case. Because this process can be time-consuming, it is not surprising that this is often the reason why a case can take a while to resolve.
Thus, you should not expect to receive compensation for your injuries right away, and if you find yourself confused or frustrated with the process, our knowledgeable AndroGel Injury Lawyers at Parker Waichman, LLP, are always here to answer your questions should they arise. You can also be sure that our experienced lawyers are always working hard to achieve the best possible results in every case.
If you’ve taken or are considering using AndroGel, you may have questions about how the product works, the risks associated with it, and the pending lawsuits. Our attorneys at Parker Waichman LLP have compiled some educational information on a variety of topics regarding AndroGel.
Q. What Does AndroGel Do for a Man?
A. AndroGel is used to treat hypogonadism because it contains a natural male hormone called testosterone. When it is applied daily, it can be used to treat conditions in men that stem from low testosterone.
Q. Who Manufactures AndroGel?
A. Abbott Laboratories acquired AndroGel in 2010 and three years later, AbbVie spun off from the company and is now the manufacturer of the testosterone gel.
Q. How Long Does it Take AndroGel to Work?
A. Overall, effects that can change quality of life will begin about three to four weeks after beginning to apply AndroGel, but it could take up to six months to see major changes.
Q. Is AndroGel Legal?
A. Yes, AndroGel has been vetted by the FDA and can be available to anybody with low testosterone as long as they have a prescription.
Q. Is AndroGel Dangerous?
A. Even though AndroGel has been approved by the FDA and used with a prescription by medical professionals, it can contain serious side effects like decreased sperm production and fertility, blood clot, heart attacks, stroke, and even death.
Q. How Much Will AndroGel Raise My Testosterone?
A. AndroGel will raise testosterone to normal levels and prolonged use will serve to keep it at those normal levels.
Q. Does AndroGel Stop Natural Testosterone Production?
A. While AndroGel can help raise testosterone levels, studies have been done that show that despite raising testosterone, it could suppress the function of the testes and result in low sperm count.
Q. Can You Overdose on AndroGel?
A. Yes, it’s possible to overdose on AndroGel and push testosterone levels too high. If you think you may have, call your local healthcare provider or Poison Control Center immediately and seek emergency medical attention right away.
Q. Is There an Alternative to AndroGel?
A. Yes, there is an alternative drug that has the same effects as AndroGel. Perrigo launched Testosterone 1% Gel as the generic alternative to AbbVie’s AndroGel product.
Q. How Much Does AndroGel Cost?
A. The common version of AndroGel is covered by most insurance plans with a co-pay of $32-$50, but the AndroGel transdermal gel can cost up to $660 without insurance depending on the pharmacy you visit.
Q. What Happens if You Stop Taking AndroGel?
A. AndroGel is supposed to be used daily if it is prescribed by your doctor and if you stop taking it, it’s possible that your testosterone level may fall back to its previous level within two to three days.
Q. Is AndroGel a Steroid?
A. Steroids contain testosterone and when applied correctly, it’s been shown that about 9-14% of the steroid in the gel is applied to the body to help supplement natural testosterone.
Q. What Kind of Testosterone is in AndroGel?
A. AndroGel helps with endogenous testosterone absence or deficiency in adult males. Endogenous testosterone is cholesterol that is made inside the body and cannot be supplemented through diet.
Q. How Much Testosterone is Absorbed from AndroGel?
A. Approximately 10% of the testosterone from each dose of AndroGel is absorbed through the skin during a 24-hour period.
Q. Do I Need a Prescription for AndroGel?
A. AndroGel 1% is a prescription medication and your healthcare provider will give you a blood test before you start your AndroGel regiment to make sure it is the right fit for you.
Q. Why is AndroGel a Controlled Substance?
A. AndroGel is considered a controlled substance because it contains testosterone. Testosterone is commonly targeted by people who abuse prescription medications, which is why it is imperative that you never give your AndroGel to anybody else.
Q. How Long Does AndroGel Last?
A. AndroGel lasts for 24 to 48 hours after the last application and is completely out of the system by the fifth day after it is last used.
Q: Why Should I Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer to Take on my AndroGel Injury Case?
A: Lawsuits that involve large pharmaceutical and insurance companies can be complex. When you are trying to deal with unpaid medical bills and other mounting expenses, trying to handle your case on your own can be a daunting task especially if you are still recovering from your injury or illness. A personal injury attorney who has extensive experience handling these types of cases will be familiar with the process, will collect the records and other evidence they know they need to establish your case, and will know how to deal with large companies and other attorneys, and will not be afraid to take your case to trial. When you choose an experienced AndroGel injury lawyer at Parker Waichman, LLP, you can rest assured that your lawyer will do everything they can to ensure you obtain the best results possible in your case. At our firm, you don’t owe us a thing unless and until your case results in a favorable settlement or you win at trial so call us today to schedule your free and confidential consultation.
Q: Do I Need to File my AndroGel Injury Lawsuit by a Certain Date?
A: If you’ve sustained an injury or illness such as a heart attack or stroke due to your use of a testosterone replacement therapy, you might be entitled to compensation. Thousands of individuals have filed lawsuits against the large pharmaceutical companies who manufacture, sell, and market these products. As with any personal injury claim, there are certain time limits or deadlines for filing an AndroGel Injury case. These time limits, which are also known as statutes of limitations, are different in every state. Thus, to determine the particular time within which you should file your lawsuit, you should seriously consider consulting with an experienced AndroGel Injury Lawyer right away to preserve your rights to compensation.
Q: Do I Have a Claim for Damages if I Believe That My Heart Attack Was the Result of the Testosterone Replacement Therapy That I’ve Been Using?
A: In many cases, if you’ve suffered an injury or illness such as a heart attack, blood clot, or stroke, after using AndroGel or another testosterone product, you might be able to file a lawsuit to obtain compensation for your injuries or other damages. Thousands of individuals have already filed claims against various pharmaceutical companies hoping to receive compensation for the injuries they sustained as a result of the negligent actions of these companies. To find out whether you also have a claim for damages, be sure to consult with the experienced AndroGel Injury Lawyers at Parker Waichman, LLP. At Parker Waichman, LLP, our lawyers will always take the time to listen to you and learn about your case, will conduct a thorough investigation and retain any needed experts, and will work hard to obtain he results you need and deserve. Call us today to find out what we can do for you.
Q: Can I File a Lawsuit on Behalf of a Family Member Who Died Following Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
A: The use of testosterone replacement therapy has been thought to cause heart attacks, strokes, blood clots, and even death amongst those who use testosterone products. When a family member dies from complications after using AndroGel or another testosterone product, the surviving family members can usually file a wrongful death lawsuit against those responsible for their loved one’s injuries. The purpose of a wrongful death lawsuit is to provide compensation to family members who have lost a family member, including parents, spouses, children, or even siblings. The compensation or other damages that a surviving family can obtain include compensation for their loved one’s medical expenses, lost earnings or loss of support, and for the loss of love and companionship.
Q: Can AndroGel Cause Blood Clots, Heart Attacks, or Strokes?
A: According to scientific studies, some men have an increased risk of suffering a blood clot, heart attack, or stroke while using prescription testosterone replacement therapy. Some individuals that began testosterone replacement therapy might be up to thirty percent more at risk for a heart attack or stroke due to pre-existing conditions or lifestyle.
Q. Can AndroGel Cause Weight Gain?
A. Studies have shown that rapid weight gain or swelling is one of the severe side effects that could potentially be linked to AndroGel. If you experience rapid fluctuation in your body weight, contact your local emergency medical service for help.
Q: What Products are Used to Treat Low Testosterone?
A: Research has revealed that about three to seven percent of men experience low testosterone or hypogonadism. Many doctors and patients treat low testosterone or hypogonadism by prescribing testosterone replacement therapies. However, doctors have also been known to prescribe or recommend the therapies to those who have a dip in testosterone simply due to aging.
The following are some of the products that have been used to treat low testosterone:
Q: Should I Stop Using Testosterone Replacement Therapies?
A: There are many studies that indicate a link between the use of testosterone replacement therapies and an increased risk of heart attack, stroke, blood clots, and even death. It is important to note that the FDA has only approved the use of testosterone replacement therapies to treat those who have low testosterone associated with hypogonadism. This means that the FDA has not approved the use of the products by men who have experienced a dip in testosterone production due to their age and would like to increase strength or improve their mood or erectile function. If you must use testosterone products or feel you need to use them, then you should be well aware of the potential risks associated with that use and seek medical advice first.
Q: Has the Food and Drug Administration Issued an AndroGel Recall?
A: There have been no recalls issued for testosterone replacement therapies as of yet despite the studies that have indicated a link between use of the therapy and an increased risk of heart attack and stroke. In addition, the FDA did not require companies to label testosterone products to reflect the possible increased risk of heart attack and stroke until 2015, which has been viewed as too little too late since individuals already had suffered from the serious side effects without prior warning. In addition, the FDA has only approved of the use testosterone replacement therapy for those who experience low testosterone levels due to hypogonadism.
Q: Are There Any Other Injuries or Illnesses Linked to the Use of Testosterone Replacement Therapies?
A: There are some studies that link the use of testosterone therapies to an increased risk of developing prostate cancer. These therapies also have been thought to exacerbate sleep apnea, increase the risk of infertility, upset hormonal balances, enlarge male breasts, cause skin irritations or acne, and change hair patterns and growth.
Parker Waichman LLP?
At Parker Waichman LLP, our skilled and seasoned lawyers are dedicated to their legal practice, and they zealously advocate for the rights of every client. Our attorneys are committed to providing our clients with the quality service and stellar legal representation that has earned Parker Waichman LLP, a reputation for success.
Awards & Accolades
In fact, our lawyers have obtained more than a total of two million dollars in compensation for our personal injury clients through determination and hard work.
Some of the honors and accolades that our firm has received include:
- A listing in Best Lawyers, which is a publication by Extensive Peer Review
- An AVVO rating of 9.8 out of 10
- Lawdragon’s highest ranking of “5 Dragons”
- An AV Peer Review Rating as “Preeminent Lawyers”
If you or a loved one has suffered a heart attack, stroke, or other condition that you believe is the result of testosterone replacement therapies, it is important that you consult with an experienced and dedicated AndroGel Injury Lawyer at Parker Waichman LLP, as soon as possible to protect your legal right to compensation.
At Parker Waichman LLP, our skilled attorneys have extensive experience handling complicated personal injury cases, especially when it comes to dealing with large pharmaceutical and insurance companies. If you would like to discuss your case with one of our experienced attorneys, contact us to schedule your free case consultation. Call us today at 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529) or fill out our online contact form.
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