Following a September 30 status conference, the first Benicar multidistrict litigation lawsuit has been scheduled for trial in late 2016, reports the New Jersey Law Journal.
The litigation, overseen by District Judge Michael Schneider in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, already includes over 1,100 Benicar lawsuits. These have been filed by patients who claim Daiichi Sankyo’s hypertension drug Benicar caused them to suffer severe gastrointestinal side effects, including chronic diarrhea and rapid weight loss. In 2013 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a safety communication warning it had “found clear evidence of an association between [Benicar] and sprue-like enteropathy,” a complex of serious gastrointestinal conditions. By then, it had been over a decade since the agency approved Benicar for treatment of high blood pressure in 2002, and in that time millions of Americans had been prescribed the drug.
Benicar plaintiffs claim that Daiichi Sankyo did not adequately test its drug before release and failed to sufficiently warn doctors and patients of Benicar’s gastrointestinal risks.
During a September 30 pretrial meeting, Judge Schneider ordered Sankyo “to submit to an in camera (judge-only) review of documents relating to a $39 million settlement it reached with the U.S. Department of Justice in January on False Claims Act charges.” Sankyo has also been ordered to supply documents that show it is complying with the January settlement. As for the Benicar lawsuits, the company has also been ordered to produce adverse event reports.
Speak with your doctor before switching or stopping any medications. If you or someone you know suffered a gastrointestinal injury after taking Benicar, contact Lopez McHugh to speak free of charge with a pharmaceutical lawyer. We can help you assess your legal options and help you determine whether a Benicar lawsuit is right for you.