Almost 1,000 separate lawsuits have now been brought against Sanofi-Aventis, the makers of Taxotere – a chemotherapy drug that cancer survivors allege caused them permanent hair loss.
In a Court Order dated 27th April 2017 it was stated that the federal litigation, currently taking place in the US District Court in the Eastern District of Louisiana, would proceed. Furthermore, the parties bringing the 949 lawsuits in relation to Taxotere would each be granted 30 minutes to present their cases during the case’s ‘Science Day’.
Taxotere case Science Day
A Science Day is a day (or days) during a lawsuit when experts, lawyers and plaintiffs present information during large scale and/or complex litigation. These presentations tend to be off-the-record.
In the Taxotere case, this Science Day is due to take place on 4th May 2017 and will be used to inform the court as to the central medical and scientific issues involved. This is a public briefing and whether or not the Taxotere legal representatives appointed to the Plaintiff’s Steeting Committee will attend has not been confirmed. Their attendance is not mandatory.
Taxotere was released in 1996 as a breast cancer treatment but its remit has since been expanded to include various other forms of cancer.
It is understood that the plaintiffs involved will assert that information regarding the risk of permanent hair loss from being treated with Taxotere was withheld from them. Plaintiffs currently claim that the company behind the drug, Sanofi-Aventis, knew of and withheld published research from the 1990s which estimated persistent alopecia for 10 years or more following treatment with Taxotere was found in 9.2 per cent of patients.
Additionally, an oncologist in Denver also reported that a higher percentage of his patients had the same experience with the drug, in 2006, whilst doctors and patients across Europe and Canada were also warned of this potential side effect in 2005 and 2012, respectively. In contrast, the drug’s USA label stated only that “hair generally grows back” until 2015 when it was updated to include a statement regarding cases of permanent alopecia having been reported among patients.
Hair growth following cancer
One thing many people aren’t prepared for, however, is that the hair may grow back with a different texture or colour. Developing curly hair is fairly common feedback among chemo-treated cancer survivors. These quirks are rarely permanent though. They often last for one or two hair growth cycles after which the hair should return to its normal pre-cancer state.
If thinning hair remains a problem following chemotherapy then hair loss treatment is often a possibility. At Belgravia we do require written confirmation from a patient’s oncologist to confirm that they are suitable for treatment beforehand, however, to ensure safety and the best situation for the patient.
The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.