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Tampa Bay Truvada Lawyers

Truvada is an antiretroviral medication developed by Gilead Sciences, Inc., and is used to help treat HIV in those who have already contracted the condition. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration first approved the once-daily tablet in August of 2004 for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults.

While Gilead Sciences has held a prominent place in the HIV drug market, the company is now facing accusations that its product, Truvada, is responsible for causing an increased risk of bone injuries and kidney damage in users.

Two Californians initiated lawsuits against the company, creating both their own individual claims and class-action lawsuits for others to join in strength to hold Gilead accountable for their negligent actions. With the HIV drug market expected to reach $22.5 billion in sales by 2025, Gilead Sciences is sure to challenge these accusations.

That is why users of Truvada who have suffered bone or kidney-related injuries should seek out legal support to protect their rights and recover the compensation they need to begin healing.

The Tampa Bay Truvada lawsuit attorneys at Onder Law Firm are currently investigating claims by those who have suffered severe bone loss or kidney damages after using Truvada. Contact our dependable team today at (314) 310-7924 for a FREE, no-obligation consultation.

The Basics of Truvada

Truvada is a fixed-dose HIV medication made from 2 different drugs: emtricitabine (FTC) and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF). The drug is meant to be taken in combination with other HIV medications to help control the growth of the virus in individuals who have been affected.

These two components in Truvada are known as nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors and work by essentially stopping the actions of the enzyme known as reverse transcriptase. By stopping the process of this enzyme, Truvada is able to stop the replication of the virus in healthy cells.

The issue with the drug is that TDF has been linked to increased risks of bone demineralization (bone loss) and kidney-related health issues.

Lawsuits allege that Gilead Sciences was fully aware of TDF’s toxicity and yet failed to adequately warn medical professionals prescribing the drug, as well as users, about the inherent risks.

If you or a loved one have taken Truvada to manage your HIV-1 and have begun to suffer from bone-related or kidney-related health issues, contact our trustworthy Tampa Bay defective drug attorneys at (314) 310-7924 for a FREE case evaluation.

Studies Suggest Tenofovir in Truvada Increases the Risk of Bone Loss

The TDF component in Truvada has been linked to bone loss in several research studies, including one conducted by CATIE. As per this study of over 1,700 HIV positive individuals:

  • On average, study participants who followed a TAF-based regimen lost 2 percent of their bone density in their spine compared to a loss of three percent by those taking a TDF-based regimen.
  • Those taking a TAF-based drug lost about 1 percent of bone density in their hips compared to a loss of three percent by those taking TDF.

While the differences may seem insignificant, they nonetheless point to the fact that TDF-based drugs can cause quantifiable bone loss. This should be of cause for concern as individuals with HIV already face increased risks of bone loss as a result of their condition.

If no preventative actions or forms of treatment are sought to minimize bone loss caused by Truvada, then users may begin to suffer from:

  • Discomfort and pain in arms and legs
  • Fractures and breaks
  • Osteopenia
  • Osteoporosis
  • Dental health problems (loss of teeth)

Unfortunately, users of Truvada may not even initially recognize that they are dealing with bone loss until they have suffered a fracture. The most common injuries individuals with osteoporosis suffer include fractures to the spine, hip, wrist, or forearm.

Being aware of the symptoms of bone loss can help you to bring the issue to the attention of your healthcare provider. While there may not be any signs of bone loss initially, over time you may note:

  • Unexplained back pain
  • Fractured or collapsed vertebra
  • “Rapid” loss of height
  • Stooped posture
  • Suffering a fracture or break after a minor incident

Have you or a loved one been taking Truvada and suddenly suffer an unexpected fracture? You may have the right to restitution.

Truvada Users Face Potential Kidney Damage

Truvada has also been linked with kidney damage. In order for TDF to be effective, it must be taken in high quantities. The abundance of the component in the user’s bloodstream can be a challenge for their kidneys to fully filter. Over time, the kidney damage can begin to occur, which can then lead to:

  • Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)
  • Declining Kidney Function/Decreased Urination
  • Acute Kidney Injury
  • Acute Renal Failure
  • Kidney Failure

Symptoms of chronic kidney disease can include:

  • Chest pain
  • Dry skin
  • Itching or numbness
  • Increased or decreased urination
  • Swelling in feet and ankles
  • Muscle cramps
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weakness
  • Vomiting
  • Weight loss
  • Anemia
  • Bone disease
  • Cognitive issues

Frighteningly, chronic kidney disease is generally progressive and becomes harder to treat over time. In the final stages of kidney disease, kidneys may lose all or most of their function, and ultimately, fail. Symptoms of kidney failure may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Back pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Nosebleeds
  • Rash
  • Vomiting

Additional health complications can also begin to arise with kidney failure including high chances of having a heart attack or stroke. Dialysis and/or organ transplants are the only ways to treat kidney failure.

Gilead’s Overpriced Life Saving Drug

In early April of 2019, HIV/AIDS activists joined together at the AIDSWatch 2019 event in Washington, DC, to contest the workings of pharmaceutical giant Gilead and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The attendees, similar to plaintiffs, were arguing that Gilead was price gouging – and putting lives at risk – by charging thousands of dollars for a medication that cost the company $6 to produce.

A report in the Washington Post found that research on Truvada had been funded by millions in U.S. tax dollars through federal grants and that the government had even patented the treatment (for preventative care) in 2015. Yet, it was only Gilead Sciences who saw any money from the sales of the drug – to the tune of $3 billion in 2018 alone.

Despite the U.S. government’s patent on the drug, Gilead has benefited tremendously from its monopoly on the product and has yet to face any considerable legal repercussions against any government agencies.

With $291 million more expected to go into a federal HIV/AIDS initiative, which will likely include increased prescriptions of HIV drugs such as Truvada, Gilead stands to make even more money – but at a cost that few can afford.

The lives of users are at risk from not only the serious side effects caused by Truvada but by the outrageous costs of the medication. Corporate greed has once again reared its ugly head, putting profit before people.

HIV in Tampa Bay

While the United States has experienced an overall decline in new HIV diagnoses, there are certain regions and populations within the country which have seen an increase in recent years. The State of Florida is one such area that has seen an increase in HIV diagnoses.

In 2017, Florida had the nation’s third-highest rate of new HIV diagnoses at more than 4,800 cases. Seven counties in the state are ranked in the top 50 jurisdictions with the highest number of new HIV cases, including Hillsborough County.

Tampa Bay is the county seat of Hillsborough County. As per the Florida Department of Health:

  • Tampa Bay saw a 23 percent increase in the number of HIV diagnoses between 2007 to 2016. This was especially true for people in their 20s living in the city.
  • Adjacent counties Pinellas and Pasco saw 28 percent increases during this same time frame.

AIDSvu.org offers some additional perspective to the situation in the Tampa Bay metropolitan statistical area (MSA) which includes the counties of Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco, and Pinellas.

As per the organization:

  • In 2017, there were 12,837 people living with HIV in the Tampa Bay area.
  • Of those individuals living with HIV in 2017:
    • 2 percent were of Black race/ethnicity
    • 8 percent were of Hispanic/Latinx race/ethnicity
    • 6 percent were of White race/ethnicity
  • Of those living with HIV in the Tampa Bay in 2017:
    • 76 percent were male
    • 24 percent were female
  • In 2017, the Tampa Bay MSA saw:
    • 570 new HIV diagnoses
    • Nearly 80 percent were males while 20 percent were females
  • The highest rate of HIV diagnoses was for Black females, which stood at 14 times higher than that of their White female counterparts.
  • Males were most likely to contract HIV by male-to-male sexual contact (71.8 percent).
  • Females were most likely to contract HIV through heterosexual contact (70.6 percent).
  • In 2015, the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater area had an HIV diagnosis rate of 20 per 100,000 residents.

Thankfully, there are efforts being made by AIDS healthcare groups and advocate to increase services and public health awareness about the importance of HIV prevention.

Let Onder Law Firm Help You Recover Compensation for Your Truvada Injuries

At Onder Law Firm, our Tampa Bay Truvada lawsuit attorneys are determined to help our clients secure full and fair compensation for the injuries they have suffered as a result of taking the defective drug. We will not accept just any settlement and will thoroughly investigate your claim to help you secure compensation for but not limited to:

  • Medical Bills (past, present, and future bills related to your Truvada injuries)
  • Lost Wages (past, present, and future)
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Decreased Quality of Life
  • Loss of Consortium
  • Out-of-Pocket Expenses
  • Wrongful Death-Related Costs

You are not alone in your fight against Gilead Sciences. Our dependable and experienced attorneys have secured over $3 billion in financial compensation for our clients. We know how to get you the results you deserve.

Contact us today at (314) 310-7924 for your FREE, no-obligation consultation.

Our team is ready to help you with your Truvada case Call (314) 310-7924

This web site is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship. The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. Past results afford no guarantee of future results. Every case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Results include Co-lead counsel on Yaz MDL & co-liaison leadership role in Pradaxa MDL.