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When a patient is diagnosed with a condition such as rheumatoid arthritis, they trust that the medication that they're prescribed will help make the symptoms more manageable. However, Arava (leflunomide), a pharmaceutical drug that belongs to a family of disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs), and a common medication prescribed for this type of condition, has shown to have severe and potentially deadly side effects, including liver failure.
Arava was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1998 and is manufactured by the pharmaceutical drug company Sanofi-Aventis. The FDA later performed a study that found that between August 2002 and May 2009, 14 liver failure fatalities and 49 severe liver injuries were linked to Arava. Drug makers have a responsibility to patients and doctors to make sure that the drugs they manufacture are safe and include accurate warning labels. While most over the counter drugs and other pharmaceuticals run the risk of some side effects or a possible allergic reaction, the danger of serious injury or even wrongful death is greater when warning labels lack appropriate information. Because of the Arava liver failure deaths and severe injuries, the FDA has mandated that a black box warning be included on the packaging, which is the toughest warning that can be issued.
Patients who rely on medications such as Arava to manage their medical conditions don't expect to end up worse off than before they started taking the medication; however, due to insufficient drug labeling, these medications have inflicted harm on unsuspecting patients and may still pose certain health risks. Some side effects of Arava include:
- Chest pain
- Blistering on the inside of the eyelids, nose, or mouth
- Coagulopathy or blood clotting problems
- Peeling or blistering skin
- Encephalopathy or brain disease
- Joint disorders
- Liver failure
- Other side effects
If you or a family member is using Arava and are experiencing any of these symptoms or other serious side effects, contact your doctor immediately. Other potential symptoms or complications may include dark urine, lightly colored stool, loss of appetite and itching.
Family members of patients whose prescribed use of Arava resulted in wrongful death due to liver failure have certain rights in Pennsylvania. Despite the new FDA Arava side effects black box warning label, if a loved one has passed away due to liver complications related to Arava, the manufacturer can be held liable. If your loved one's condition was improperly diagnosed and they were wrongly prescribed Arava to manage their condition which resulted in wrongful death, the doctor may be held responsible as well.
While no amount of money will ever bring your loved one back, holding those responsible for their negligent actions can help ease financial burdens and prevent others from suffering injury or death so that nobody else's family has to go through the same loss. A Pennsylvania Arava liver failure wrongful death attorney will be able to help you understand your rights and determine the best course of action for a successful case outcome. Some damages that you could file for in a Pennsylvania wrongful death lawsuit include:
- Loss of companionship
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of income
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of a help
- Medical expenses
- Other damages
If a loved one has been the victim of a liver failure wrongful death due to Arava, you'll want to think about hiring a qualified Arava lawyer with experience in wrongful death cases. Losing a loved one is never easy and the thought of filing a wrongful death lawsuit may seem overwhelming while you're grieving. However, the skilled, compassionate attorneys at Monheit Law will hold all negligent parties responsible so that you can focus on healing. For more information or to schedule a free evaluation of your Pennsylvania Arava liver failure wrongful death case, call us at 866-761-1385.