Jury Awards $3.6M Actos Drug Injury Verdict

A jury has ordered Takeda Pharmaceutical Company to pay $2.3M in compensatory damages and $1.3 million in punitive damages to a man who claims that the diabetes drug caused him to develop bladder cancer. John Kristufek said that the drug maker hid the dangerous risks involved with taking the medication.

Actos is a pill that is designed to regulate blood sugar levels. It is typically prescribed to people with type 2 diabetes.

In his drug defect lawsuit, Kristufek argued that although drug representatives don’t deliver the medication or information to doctors offices and pharmacies, they come up with strategies to get doctors to prescribe Actos as safer than other diabetes medications. The incentive for the salespersons, Kristufek claims, is commissions, bonuses, and other rewards.

He said that he did not know that Actos was a dangerous drug until 2011 when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration made an announcement that the drug may increase the risk of bladder cancer. Kristufek, 74, was diagnosed with this very form of cancer in 2009 after taking Actos for four years. He had to have his bladder taken out. Kristufek said he would never have used the drug if he knew it could cause cancer.

The jury ruled that Takeda exhibited “reckless indifference” to the plaintiff’s health.

Signs of bladder cancer:
• Blood in the urine • Painful urination • Frequent urination • Abdominal pain • Urinary tract infection • Back pain
Taking Actos may also increase any serious heart problems.

Takeda is accused of knowing as far back as 2004 that Actos could be a cancer risk but purportedly waited several years before putting out a warning in order to protect its profits. It has generated billions of dollars in sales.

Over 2,700 drug injury lawsuits have been filed. You want to speak with a Boston Actos defect attorney who can help you explore your legal options.

Jury orders Takeda to pay plaintiff $3.65 million for damages from Actos, The Pennsylvania Record, February 18, 2015

FDA Drug Safety Communication: Update to ongoing safety review of Actos (pioglitazone) and increased risk of bladder cancer, FDA, June 15, 2011

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