Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline recently settled a lawsuit concerning the heart attack risks of Avandia (rosiglitazone), according to Bloomberg.com. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of a North Carolina (NC) man was lost his life in 2006 after suffering a heart attack while taking the dangerous diabetes drug.
The settlement avoided a jury verdict which may have resulted in millions of dollars' worth of punitive damages to the company. According to Bloomberg, the company has already agreed to pay almost half a billion dollars to resolve around 10,000 lawsuits concerning Avandia's heart attack health risks.
The North Carolina (NC) man's lawsuit was the first of 2,000 cases on Avandia scheduled to go to trial. Sadly, the NC man, an electrical-parts salesman, died at age 49, after taking Avandia for 15 months to treat diabetes.
In the United States, sales of the dangerous drug were limited because of heart attack risks. In September 2010, Glaxo said it would stop promoting Avandia worldwide.
On January 17, 2011, Glaxo announced it was taking a $3.5 billion charge to cover expenses linked to investigations and suits over Avandia side effects. In the past 12 months, the company has set aside $6.4 billion in legal costs relating to Avandia.
This is what happens when a drug company haphazardly introduces a dangerous drug to the market. The legal costs become significant because people's lives are being ruined due to the horrendous side effects of the drug.
To learn more about Avandia side effects and health risks, check out this blog.