ATLANTA, GA - (NETLAW) - Over 100,000 Georgia residents may be at risk for cardiopulmonary disease as a result of using Fen-Phen. Recent data from the National Institutes of Health showing a 25 percent drug incidence rate was reported at a medical conference on Saturday, February 7, l998.
"Fen-Phen may have caused a public health crisis similar to the asbestos and Dalkon Shield tragedies," says Guerry R. Thornton, Jr., whose Atlanta law firm, Netlaw, is representing Fen-Phen victims. His firm recovered $45 million for IUD victims in the $2.5 billion Dalkon Shield compensation plan.
James C. Simmons, a Pharmaceutical Injury Trial Lawyer associated with Thornton, says the 25 percent incidence of heart valve damage noted in a recent New England Journal of Medicine article "is the largest rate of serious side effect I have seen in 25 years of litigation."
The findings were reported by Dr. Heidi Connolly at the Society of Critical Care Medicine. Mayo Clinic studies also show a high incidence of fatigue, heart irregularities, chest pain and swelling of the ankles, all signs of cardiopulmonary disease. As the disease can be fatal, the FDA advises Fen-Phen users to get medical exams. Fen-Phen use nationwide may have left 5 million people at risk for heart and lung disease.
Before the drugs were recalled, the use of Fen-Phen had increased 300 percent, the largest increase in U.S. history. About 20 million monthly prescriptions were written in l996. The first side effects were reported in early 1994, more than 3 1/2 years before the drugs were pulled from the U.S. market.
Fen-Phen claims have caused an avalanche of suits against drug makers and diet centers. One suit against a drug maker has been resolved and one claimant in Florida was paid $250,000.00 by a doctor who negligently prescribed the drugs.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Guerry R. Thornton @ 404/467-1670; Author, "Fen-Phen Liability", Mealeys, Vol. 1, No. 3; Counsel, Waters v. Wyeth-Ayerst (NDGA); Or, Carol Haas, Public Relations Agent @ 770/934-5167.
THE AUTHOR: Guerry R. Thornton, Jr., a lawyer in Atlanta, handles Phen/Fen claims & is counsel in the Sankey action; he has prosecuted claims in the $2.5 billion Dalkon Shield plan & the $230 million Dupont Plaza Hotel disaster; he is a member of The Association of Trial Lawyers of America & has published articles on mass tort litigation in Trial Magazine & The National Law Journal; his Internet cite is: www.netlaw.net.