Over the years, there have been several weight loss medications on the market that have caused serious side effects. Some of the risks associated with these medications were found to outweigh their benefit of losing weight.
For instance, consumers who used the weight loss drug Meridia saw little weight loss benefit. Conversely, a controlled study for Meridia showed a significant increased risk of heart attacks and strokes. Another example is Fen-Phen, likely a more well-known weight loss medication, which was found to have a significantly elevated risk of valvular heart damage with its usage. Due to the injuries that many of these consumers suffered, several lawsuits were filed against the makers of these various drugs, in order to hold them accountable for their wrongful actions.
History appears to repeat itself with another weight loss medication that has been linked to a significant injury or condition. On Feb. 13, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requested the makers of Belviq and Belviq XR to withdraw this medication from the market due to a link to an increased risk of cancer. Belviq, manufactured by Eisai Inc. and Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc., is a prescription medication that suppresses a person’s appetite by increasing the feeling of fullness.
A class action lawsuit has recently been filed against Eisai Inc. and Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc. The lawsuit alleges, among other things, that the companies knew about the risk of cancer but failed to disclose that risk to the consumers. Additionally, the lawsuit alleges that the risks of these drugs outweigh the benefits of its usage.
For instance, the lawsuit claims that users of this medication only achieved about a 5% weight loss among those who were already overweight. This benefit compared to the increased risk of cancer is not what the Plaintiffs’ involved in this lawsuit bargained for. Especially since these drugs were not covered by insurance and consumers paid as much as $300.00 per month for a prescription refill.
Hundreds of thousands of consumers purchased Belviq or Belviq XR and potentially are eligible class members to the lawsuit. A representative of Eisai Inc. indicated that they felt this lawsuit was without merit and planned to vigorously fight it.
Beasley Allen lawyers are investigating cases involving individuals who were diagnosed with cancer after taking Belviq or Belviq XR. They are looking at individual cases of pancreatic cancer, colorectal cancer and lung cancer in patients who have been treated with Belviq. Contact Roger Smith, Ryan Duplechin, or Melissa Prickett for more information.