Losing weight isn’t easy but sometimes it’s necessary. Especially when your doctor says you need to shed some pounds to improve your health.
If you’ve struggled with losing weight, you may have started taking the weight-loss drug Belviq. Like most people, you trusted that the medication you took was safe.
When that trust is violated, a dangerous drug can end up hurting people. That’s what’s happening now with Belviq (generic lorcaserin), a weight-loss diet drug made by Japanese company Eisai and developed by Arena Pharmaceuticals.
Now, a 5-year safety study shows that:
- Belviq increases the risk of cancer in patients, and
- The increased risk of cancer does not outweigh the benefits of the drug.
That’s a serious finding. The risk includes several types of cancers such as:
- Colorectal cancer
- Lung cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
More research is being done on Belviq’s risk for other cancers, such as breast or brain cancer.
As a result of this study, the FDA made Eisai agree to withdraw Belviq from the market. Doctors stopped prescribing the medication to their patients.
This can be frightening news to hear if you took Belviq to manage your weight. If you took Belviq and you developed cancer, you might have a case for personal injury.
As a patient, you should be able to trust that the medicine you take is safe. If you got sick as a result of taking Belviq, the legal system can ease the burden on you and your family. Instead of worrying about your medical bills, you can focus on your health, treatment, and recovery.
Did you get diagnosed with cancer after taking Belviq or generic lorcaserin for weight loss? Talk to Harlan Law now. We’re fighting for patients who’ve been hurt by this drug. Call our office now at (619) 870-0802 for your free consultation.
Belviq and Lorcaserin Cancer Risk
The FDA approved Belviq and Belviq XR in 2012 for patients with weight-related problems who were struggling to lose weight. Doctors often prescribed Belviq together with exercise and diet to help patients lose weight. The drug works by altering the serotonin levels in your brain to reduce your appetite and make you feel full.
Belviq and generic lorcaserin became the first weight-loss drugs to be approved by the agency in 13 years. As a condition of approval, the FDA required Eisai to carry out clinical trials to monitor the effect of the medication.
In January 2020, the FDA announced that a clinical trial studying the safety of Belviq showed an increased risk of cancer in patients taking the drug.
The double-blind study followed 12,000 patients over the course of 5 years. The result: more patients who took Belviq got cancer than those who took the placebo.
Less than a month later, in February 2020, the manufacturer agreed to withdraw Belviq from the market and stop selling the drug in the United States.
By then, hundreds of thousands of patients had already taken the drug. 600,000 prescriptions of Belviq were filled in just the year 2015.
If you take Belviq, you should talk to your doctor to determine if you should stop immediately.
Improper Research Into Cancer Risk
Belviq lawyers admitted that patients could have avoided cancer if the drugmaker had properly researched the side effects and warned about the risks.
This research should’ve been done before Belviq ever hit the market. That’s because the FDA rejected Belviq’s first drug application in 2010.
The reason? Not enough evidence showing the drug didn’t cause cancer.
Patients hurt by this major oversight have started filing legal claims against Belviq’s manufacturer. Claims include Belviq wrongful death lawsuits, Belviq personal injury lawsuits, and Belviq recall class action claims.
These lawsuits claim that Belviq’s manufacturer failed to:
- Research Belviq’s side effects before putting the drug on the market
- Follow up on studies that linked Belviq to increased cancer risk
- Provide accurate information about the safety of Belviq
- Recall Belviq when necessary to stop further harm
This type of behavior shows pharmaceutical companies at their worst: putting profits ahead of the health and lives of people.
As a patient, you have rights. Filing a personal injury lawsuit can help you fight for those rights with a strong advocate by your side.
How Can a Personal Injury Lawsuit Help Belviq Patients?
Personal injury lawsuits exist to “make you whole” after suffering injury or harm because of someone else’s actions. A money settlement can’t compensate you for everything, especially if your health is suffering from cancer. But it can help.
You shouldn’t be on the hook for losses caused by someone else.
A personal injury settlement can help compensate you for:
- Medical bills as a result of your injury
- Physical and mental pain and suffering
- Lost wages and earning capacity
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Other punitive and compensatory damages
Punitive damages exist to punish the party who injured you. The legal system also uses punitive damages to deter companies from bad behavior. A judge might award punitive damages if your injury was caused by especially harmful behavior.
Punitive damages come into play if someone intentionally, willfully, or recklessly causes an injury. The manufacturers of Belviq may be liable for punitive damages if they:
- Continued to sell the drug even after knowing the cancer risk,
- Concealed the risks from doctors and the public, and/or
- Failed to properly study the drug before putting it out on the market.
This is all behavior that puts consumers at significant risk. A pharmaceutical company would not act this way if they were taking all the right precautions to protect the public.
Talk to a Personal Injury Lawyer Today
At Harlan Law, your first consultation with a lawyer is free. We want to hear your story.
Harlan Law handles personal injury claims nationwide in all 50 states. Our lawyers have years of experience fighting for patients in cases that involve dangerous drugs, personal injury, product liability, wrongful death, insurance bad faith, and class action lawsuits.
We also take cases on a contingency fee basis, which means we don’t get paid until we win.
We have won millions in settlements for our clients to help their recovery after an injury. We know what you’re going through and we’re here to help. Start healing today. Call us today at (619) 870-0802 for your no-cost consultation.