April 15, 2016 — The number of “Low T” lawsuits involving testosterone products like Androgel has skyrocketed to over 5,250 cases, according to a report by federal judges overseeing the litigation.
The lawsuits are centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in a Multidistrict Litigation (MDL No. 2545) under District Judge Matthew Kennelly.
All of the cases involve blood clots and cardiovascular injuries. For example, in January a lawsuit (PDF) was filed by a man who started using Androgel in 2005 for symptoms he attributed to “Low T.” After less than a year, he had a life-threatening blood clot in his lungs (pulmonary embolism).
In November 2015, Judge Kennelly issued an order dismissing lawsuits involving “generic” testosterone products. Last month, he responded to an appeal by allowing plaintiffs to pursue claims of fraudulent “off-label” marketing.
Judge Kennelly has also ordered lawyers to prepare six cases for “bellwether” trials between April and November 2017. The outcome of these trials will help lawyers determine how a jury will respond to evidence. If compensation is awarded, the payout can influence settlement negotiations, especially for people with similar injuries.
Thousands of lawsuits have been filed in the last year by men who suffered heart attacks, stroke, blood clots, pulmonary embolisms, and other severe injuries. Earlier this year, a study published in Pharmacotherapy found a 40% increased risk of heart attack among first-time testosterone users.