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Lawyers Ask to Centralize Levaquin Lawsuits in Federal Court

Lawyers Ask to Centralize Levaquin Lawsuits in Federal Court

August 13, 2015 — Law firms representing dozens of people who were injured by Levaquin have filed a motion requesting centralization of the lawsuits in one federal court, the The Legal Intelligencer reports.

Last week, 25 lawsuits involving nerve damage from Levaquin were filed in Philadelphia and lawyers said they will soon file up to 60 more.

Plaintiffs asked the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) to consolidate the rapidly-growing litigation in the Southern District of Illinois because its central location is geographically convenient.

The motion indicates that lawyers “anticipate that hundreds of additional complaints will be filed in the near future and that thousands of cases exist.”

All of the lawsuits accuse drug-makers of failing to adequately warn about the risk of peripheral neuropathy. The side effect has been on the label for Levaquin since 2004, but said it was “rare” and would resolve when Levaquin was discontinued.

The problem is that studies published as early as 2001 indicated that peripheral neuropathy often occurred rapidly and could cause permanent nerve damage. In 2013, the FDA ordered drug-makers to update the labels to emphasize this risk information.

Johnson & Johnson, the manufacturer of Levaquin, is already facing a Multi-District Litigation (MDL No. 1943) in Minnesota. About 2,000 claims were filed by people who had tendon injuries or ruptures after taking the antibiotic.

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