The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) occurs in stages. The debilitating effects of HIV can progress if the infection is left untreated and infected cells allowed to replicate. Stage 3 of HIV is known as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, or AIDS.
As the immune system fails, the body’s white blood cell count drops, which makes it essentially impossible for the individual to fight off an infection. Without proper treatment, the life expectancy of a person infected with AIDS is diminished to about three years post-diagnosis.
For this reason, healthcare professionals highly recommend that individuals who have been diagnosed with HIV begin antiretroviral therapy (ART) immediately. While this form of treatment does not cure HIV, ART can indeed help HIV-positive individuals lead longer and healthier lives by suppressing the viral load in the body.
Truvada is one antiretroviral drug commonly used by individuals diagnosed with HIV. Gilead Sciences manufactures this drug and other antiretroviral drugs alike. In 2004, the prescription was accepted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as an effective HIV treatment. It is meant to be used in combination with other NRTIs and as a daily regimen.
Known as a nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI), Truvada works to prevent transcriptase, or the replication process of infected cells. Truvada is actually composed of two NRTIs, emtricitabine (FTC) and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF).
Truvada was initially seen as a breakthrough in antiretroviral drugs and soon rose to the top of the market. It became well-trusted by physicians and recommended to patients often without fear of severe repercussions.
Unfortunately, recent lawsuits have shown otherwise. Truvada users are now coming forward with their injuries caused by the HIV drug.
Have you or a loved one taken Truvada to manage your HIV and have since suffered bone and/or kidney complications? If so, you can seek a FREE legal consultation from the Rochester Truvada lawsuit attorneys of Onder Law Firm by contacting us today at [phone-numbers].
Like with other drugs, there are possible risks in taking Truvada. However, no drug with extensive dangers should be advertised as harmless. Gilead has offered information on the common side effects associated with its product, including the following symptoms:
Pharmaceutical companies are legally obligated to deliver safe prescriptions that have undergone clinical trials to avoid any unreasonably dangerous side effects. Additionally, companies must provide clear disclosure of any risks associated with their product(s).
Some may refrain to do so, as this can deter sales and tarnish the reputation of the company and their products.
One ingredient in Truvada, tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF), has been clinically proven to increase the risk of particular health conditions. However, these complications have been down-played. Two of the most serious injuries noted by Truvada users include bone demineralization and kidney damage.
The kidneys are the system of filtering waste and toxins in the body. When this system fails to work properly, a build-up of excess electrolytes and fluids can accumulate in the body. Truvada has been linked to the dysfunction of the kidneys and an increased risk of the following conditions:
Bones in the human body are constantly regenerating cells to keep up their density and strength. The interruption of bone cell regeneration has been observed in Truvada use.
Truvada users have experienced the following bone-related damages and conditions:
In the past, Gilead did disclose potential dangers of the medication but minimized the scale of danger linked to TDF. This was in an effort to preserve the sales of the highly-profitable drug.
Gilead Sciences began to release TDF-based drugs back in 2001. Around the same time, the company was working on an HIV treatment formula with the drug tenofovir alafenamide fumarate (TAF). TAF was clinically tested in 2002 and deemed just as effective as TDF in suppressing the viral load in individuals with HIV.
By 2003, Gilead recognized the dangers of TDF, including the increased potential for bone and kidney damage. However, they progressed with the development and sale of TDF-based Truvada.
When Truvada was sanctioned by the FDA, all clinical studies on TAF were put on hold.
Now, the company is facing backlash for withholding this drug that is safer and as effective than TDF.
Different types of lawsuits have been filed against Gilead Sciences. Both class action and personal injury cases have been filed by two separate pairs of Truvada users who faced serious health complications as a result of taking the medication.
Two pairs of patients filed their cases before a California court during the Spring of 2018. These lawsuits allege that Gilead knowingly sold a defective drug to thousands of HIV-infected individuals. Aside from failing to warn users of the true dangers associated with the drug, Gilead withheld knowledge of a safer drug alternative in order to maximize sales.
The difference between the class action lawsuit and the personal injury lawsuit is that the class action case seeks to represent all Truvada patients residing in California that were exposed to the risk of bone damage and kidney failure in taking the TDF-potent prescription.
Particular demographics have an increased risk of contracting HIV. These groups include men who have sex with men (MSM) and racial minority groups, including Black and Hispanic individuals.
The latest statistics from 2017 reveal that in America, 66% of all new HIV cases occurred in MSM. More specifically, young men who have sex with men accounted for half of the total HIV diagnoses.
The state of New York ranks high in numbers of annual HIV cases. In 2017, the state experienced 2,100 new HIV cases. In total, over 125,000 New Yorkers are living with HIV, yet a staggering one-fifth of all those affected are unaware of their status. Black MSM represent one-fourth of all New York HIV cases.
Rochester, New York ranked second in the highest numbers of HIV cases in the state.
The population of this city is 38.5% Black or African American, 36.8% White, 17.8% Hispanic. According to the national trends, these racial demographics set up the city to have a higher trend of HIV cases in racial minorities in comparison with those that are less racially diverse.
Unfortunately, groups that are already at odds with access to healthcare and at a disparity for other conditions are exposed to further dangers with TDF-based drugs. Black MSM of Rochester who are diagnosed with HIV are most affected by the exposure of TDF in antiviral drugs and the injuries caused by them.
Truvada has been a boon for Gilead Sciences, bringing in billions in profits to the pharmaceutical company throughout the years. Through drug malpractice, thousands of HIV-affected individuals were exposed to bone and kidney injuries that could become fatal if not remedied.
If you or someone you love has taken Truvada and begins to experience signs of kidney failure or bone demineralization, seek medical attention immediately. Those that have been diagnosed with a TDF-related complication should talk to their doctor about potential alternatives and should seek legal help.
Manufacturers of drugs can be held liable under the following elements of product liability:
In the state of New York, victims of defective drugs have three (3) years from when the claim accrues to file a claim for their injuries.
Individuals should consider filing a personal injury lawsuit if they have suffered bone and/or kidney-related damages after they have used Truvada for a prolonged period of time.
Under a product liability claim, individuals can seek to recover compensation for but not limited to:
The best way to file a successful claim against a drug manufacturer is with committed and transparent attorneys by your side. HIV patients that have suffered harm by TDF deserve justice and peace.
Know that you are not alone. With dedication and precision, our Rochester Truvada lawsuit attorneys will handle your case and help you secure compensation from the negligent Gilead.
Call (314) 310-7924 NOW for a FREE case review from the Rochester Truvada lawsuit attorneys of Onder Law Firm.
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