Phen Fen Settlement

 

Phen Fen Settlement: PPH
Phen Fen Settlement: PPH

Phen Fen Settlement: PPH


Phen Fen Settlement: PPH

Phen Fen Settlement


Do I qualify for a Phen Fen settlement?

 


What is Phen Fen?


What is the problem with Phen Fen?


Who is responsible for the Phen Fen settlement?


What is being done to obtain a Phen Fen Settlement for PPH cases?

What can you do?


FAQs


Breaking Phen Fen news


Resources on the web for Phen Fen settlements and information


Medical information

Phen Fen Settlement: PPH
Phen Fen Settlement: PPH Phen Fen Settlement: PPH Phen Fen Settlement: PPH

Frequently Asked Questions about the Phen Fen Settlement

 

The following FAQs about Phen Fen and the Phen Fen Settlement. These are intended to provide information, in layman’s terms, relating to people who used the diet drugs Pondimin®, Redux™ and Phen Fen and subsequently opted-out of the Nationwide Class Action Phen Fen Settlement Agreement with American Home Products (AHP). This material is not intended to be a legal document nor is it intended to supersede the official description of the settlement found on the web at http://settlementdietdrugs.com regarding Phen Fen settlements

 

  What are the heart valve abnormalities associated with the use of Phen Fen?
  Does Phen Fen cause a specific type of damage?
 When is heart valve damage serious?
  How is Secondary Pulmonary Hypertension different than Primary Pulmonary Hypertension (PPH)?
  Did all users of Phen Fen experience problems with their heart valves?
  What are Phen Fen Settlement Matrix Compensation benefits?
  What is a Class Action?
  If I took Phen Fen for a period of time, am I automatically a member of the Class covered by the Nationwide Class Action Settlement Agreement?
  When does the damage occur?
  How do I detect if Phen Fen caused any damage to me?
  How do I pay for these tests?
  What kind of treatment is available if my heart has valve damage?
  What do I do about my PPH?
  Can I make a claim for damages I have suffered from taking Phen Fen?

 



What are the heart valve abnormalities associated with the use of Phen Fen?

Heart valve abnormalities that have appeared in some diet drug users occur in the two valves located on the left side of the heart. These valves are known as the aortic valve and the mitral valve. In some diet drug users, one or both of the valves developed lesions that prevent the valves from closing properly. This allows the blood to flow backwards, creating a condition known as “regurgitation"
 



Does Phen Fen cause a specific type of damage?
There are three types of injuries caused by Phen Fen. These are:

  • Heart valve damage

  • PPH (primary pulmonary hypertension), and

  • endocardial fibrosis.


 

When is heart valve damage serious?
Heart valve damage, which is also called valvulopathy, is the most common damage caused by the combination of phentermine and fenfluramine. In most cases, this occurs when the heart-valves do not close properly, which causes a leakage of blood at the valve (also known as regurgitation). While this is not usually a serious problem, if the valves are badly damaged by the Phen Fen, pulmonary hypertension may result. This type of hypertension is known as SPH or Secondary Pulmonary Hypertension.
 



How is Secondary Pulmonary Hypertension different than Primary Pulmonary Hypertension (PPH)?
First, and thankfully, primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH) is a very rare condition. Unfortunately, PPH is often fatal. PPH is caused by Phen Fen resulting in a narrowing or the destruction of both the small and medium pulmonary arteries. Arteries are the parts of the body that pump blood. Arteries provide blood supply to the heart allowing the heart muscle to function. When this occurs, the patient who took the Phen Fen often experiences overwhelming shortness of breath and tiredness. Unfortunately, many of these patients assumed that these symptoms were a result of older age or being overweight. If left untreated, the destruction of these arteries can lead to heart attack, as the heart muscle ceases to get the blood supply it requires to remain alive.

Hypertension can have many causes. When hypertension is diagnosed, the next step is to determine its source. If there are no other causes for the hypertension, the hypertension is considered to be "primary"- (from the heart itself) – and thus called primary pulmonary hypertension. This is different than SPH, which might be caused by valve regurgitation.
 



Did all users of Fen-Phen experience problems with their heart valves?
No, about 30% had regurgitation and the level of regurgitation varied. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes four levels of damage.


1. trace or physiologic;
2. mild;
3. moderate;
4. severe.


You are considered to be “FDA Positive" if you have been diagnosed as having mild, moderate or severe regurgitation (levels 2, 3 or 4) of the aortic valve or moderate or severe regurgitation (levels 3 or 4) of the mitral valve.
 



What are Phen Fen Settlement Matrix Compensation benefits?
A Class Member who has been diagnosed with serious valvular heart disease is eligible to receive Phen Fen Settlement Matrix Compensation benefits.

There are five levels of serious valvular heart disease for which you can be compensated.
Level I: Severe left-sided valvular heart disease without complicating factors that are listed
in the Settlement Agreement;
Level II: Moderate to severe left-sided valvular
heart disease with signs of injury to the heart;
Level III: Left-sided valvular
heart disease requiring valve repair or replacement surgery, or conditions that are equally severe;
Level IV: Serious complications of valvular
heart disease or valve-related surgery such as a serious stroke;
Level V: Very serious complications of valvular
heart disease or valve-related surgery, such as death or heart transplant.
 



What is a Class Action?
A class action is a lawsuit which allows a large group of people with common legal issues to participate in a legal action together instead of requiring individuals to bring their own separate suits.
As part of the Phen Fen settlement a group of trustees (collectively known as the Trust) was established to determine who is eligible for benefits.
 



If I took Fen-Phen
for a period of time, am I automatically a member of the Class covered by the Nationwide Class Action Settlement Agreement?
Yes. if you took Phen Fen, Pondimin and/or Redux or any period of time, you are automatically a member of this Class unless you decided to “Opt-Out".
 



When does the damage occur?
The time frame when damage occurs varies from patient to patient.
On the positive side, not everyone who used Phen Fen developed SPH or PPH.
 



How do I detect if Fen-Phen
caused any damage to me?
The most common way to determine if damage has occurred is through an echocardiogram. This is frequently called an “echo" and if it shows damage, the echo is said to be “positive."

The echo test is similar to the sort of test that a pregnant woman has to look at a baby – called an ultrasound. It is a painless test and does not require any incisions. Typically, the test is done by a cardiologist, and you can usually get such a referral from your primary physician

The echo is the best way to detect the damage caused by Phen Fen and is considered the proper standard of care. This means that an EKG is not adequate to determine valve damage and should make certain that you get an echo and not simply an EKG.
 



How do I pay for these tests?
If you have health insurance, it will ordinarily cover the cost of the echo. If you do not have insurance, you will need to find assistance for having the tests performed. In some cases, there are also organizations offering free tests. For more information, please contact us.
 



What kind of treatment is available if my heart has valve damage?
Depending on the type of damage, your doctor may prescribe different types of treatment. For valve injuries, some are treatable. For example, a slight valve impairment might result simply in getting yearly echocardiograms to ensure that the problem is not worsening. Some doctors may also decide to place you on antibiotics before any invasive medical procedures, to help your immune system compensate for the reduced ability of your heart to properly circulate blood and because of the regurgitation problem. This might include a procedure as simple as teeth cleanings at your dental examinations. However, if the valve damage is severe, a doctor may decide that it is necessary to perform valve repair or even valve replacement surgery. All of these decisions should be made in consultation with your doctor.



What do I do about my PPH?
If you have PPH, it is possible that it can be treated with oxygen supply or in some cases a heart-lung transplant. There are also a number of drugs specially developed for PPH. Again, these choices need to be reviewed with your doctor.
 



Can I make a claim for damages I have suffered from taking Fen-Phen?
Many people are able to pursue claims against the manufacturer of Phen Fen
. Others have also pursued claims against the physician or diet center prescribing the Phen Fen. The second claim is a medical malpractice claim. The first is a product liability claim. In a product liability claim, you need to prove that the product was not made

safely and/or that the warnings were not adequate. With Phen Fen, there has already been settlement of these claims against the manufacturers, and you may be eligible to participate in that settlement, depending on when your damage occurred and when you learned of it. Do not delay if you intend to make a claim, as many states have a statute of limitations which can time bar your claims. Furthermore, the settlement has time frames in which certain rights can be asserted and compensated.

While you don’t need an attorney to make these claims, it is often helpful to have an attorney represent you in order to have someone with experience processing these claims.


 

Do I qualify for a Phen Fen settlement?
 

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