In 2011, Fosamax lawsuits were filed by women who claim that the drug caused them to suffer low-impact femur fractures. These cases were consolidated in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey before Garrett E. Brown for pretrial proceedings. Now, lawsuits filed by women who have taken a combination of Fosamax and Boniva®, Fosamax® and Reclast®, or other combinations of bone strengthening drugs have been added to the Fosamax multidistrict litigation (MDL).
These bone strengthening medications are included in a class of drugs known as bisphosphonates, which are prescribed to treat osteoporosis, a chronic condition in which bones become fragile and break. Over time bisphosphonate drugs have built up a reputation for causing femur fractures associated with long term use.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued new warning labels for all bisphosphonate medications to include the risk for suffering bone injuries and femur fractures.
Consumers who take these bisphosphonate medications are warned to seek medical attention if they experience symptoms such as groin pain or thigh pain, which may occur prior to actually experiencing a femur fracture.
Several femur fracture lawsuits have already been transferred to the Fosamax MDL including a claim filed by Theresa Thomas-Walsh who claims to have suffered right and left femur fractures from use of Fosamax, Boniva, and Reclast.
Fosamax is the most widely taken bone strengthening drug in the U.S. and was introduced by drug manufacturer Merck & Co. in 1995. Prior to the release of a generic version of Fosamax, the drug generated $3 billion in sales.
Merck currently faces thousands of lawsuits filed across the U.S. by women who allege that the drug company failed to issue sufficient warnings regarding the risk of femur fractures associated with long term use of Fosamax. Of these, three will take place this year and are referred to a bellwether trials, or starter trials.