Can Fosamax Cause Femur Fracture? Parker Waichman LLP, a national law firm dedicated to protecting the rights of victims injured by defective medical devices, has filed a lawsuit alleging that Fosamax caused a femur fracture in a South Carolina woman. The suit was filed on June 29th in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Atlantic County Law Division (Docket No. L-456712). Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. and Merck & Co., Inc. are named as Defendants.
According to the Complaint, the Plaintiff began taking Fosamax in December 2005. In July 2010, she suffered a right subtrochanteric femur fracture, allegedly due to using the drug for years. The lawsuit alleges serious consequences including severe mental and physical pain and suffering, permanent injuries, emotional distress, economic loss due to medical expenses and living related expenses due to a new lifestyle. The suit seeks, among other things, compensatory damages, statutory damages and punitive damages.
Merck won approval for Fosamax in 1995; the drug is intended to treat bone loss due to osteoporosis and osteopenia. According to the lawsuit, the bisphosphonate drug actually increases the risk of fractures by inhibiting bone turnover while allowing secondary mineralization to occur. This allegedly causes the bones to become more brittle and vulnerable to breaks. The suit claims that the Defendants knew or should have known about this defect, but continued to market the drug without warning consumers.
Risk of Atypical Femur Fractures
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned that Fosamax and other bisphosphonates, such as Actonel or Boniva, may increase the risk of atypical femur fractures in patients taking the medication to treat osteoporosis. An atypical femur fracture (which manifests as a subtrochanteric or diaphyseal fracture) may occur during normal everyday activities with little or no trauma.
The Archives of Internal Medicine recently published a study comparing patients with atypical versus “classic” femur fractures, reporting that 82 percent of patients in the atypical fracture category had taken bisphosphonates.
The FDA has also recently published research about the risks and benefits of bisphosphonate therapy. According to their review of over 2,300 postmenopausal women, the agency stated that there was little reason to use Fosamax and its sister drugs for more than five years. The data was published late May in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Parker Waichman LLP continues to offer free legal consultations to victims of Fosamax side effects. If you or a loved experienced an atypical femur fracture and you believe Fosamax is to blame, please contact their office by visiting the firm’s Fosamax website. Free case evaluations are also available by calling 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).