If you have diabetes or another medical issue related to hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia, Tequin® can seriously intensify and aggravate your condition.
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When placed on the market by Bristol-Myers Squibb in 1999, Tequin®, manufactured under a 1996 license from Kyorin Pharmaceutical of Japan, was promoted as a new and effective antibiotic for the treatment of lung, sinus and urinary tract infections as well as certain sexually transmitted diseases, including gonorrhea. Since that time, however, it has been shown to cause serious blood-sugar irregularities, particularly among the elderly. Public Citizen, the public interest group founded by Ralph Nader, filed a petition with the Food and Drug Administration demanding a Tequin® recall. The petition made reference to 388 patients with blood-sugar irregularities associated with Tequin®, including 20 deaths and 159 hospitalizations since January 2000. According to Dr. Sidney Wolfe, director of Public Citizen's Health Research Group, "This drug carries unique risk but has no unique benefits and therefore should not be on the market."
In response to pressure from the FDA and public interest groups, Bristol-Myers Squibb stopped the manufacture of Tequin® in May 2006. If Tequin® is banned by the FDA, it will be the fifth drug of 13 approved quinolone antibiotics to be taken off the market because of serious safety problems.
Tequin® (the brand name of gatifloxacin) is a broad spectrum antibiotic in the class of drugs known as fluoroquinolones, which includes ciprofloxacin (Arflox, C-Flox, Ciloxan, Ciloquin, Ciproxin, Ciprol, Profloxin, Proquin, Procip, Ciprobay, Ciaxone); norfloxacin (Insensye, Norflohexal, Noroxin, Nufloxib, Roxin); moxifloxacin (Avelox); as well as several other generic versions of ciprofloxacin and norfloxacin. Unlike tendon ruptures, which have been linked to all fluoroquinolones, the increased risk of blood sugar disorders appears specific to Tequin®.
Bristol-Myers Squibb claims the decision to stop making Tequin® was based on "marketing reasons," but the evidence suggests a broad range of health problems strongly linked to the drug. In addition to increased risk factors involving tendon ruptures, hypoglycemia, and hyperglycemia, Tequin® has been linked to serious adverse side effect risks, which include severe and sometimes fatal allergic reactions, dangerous diarrhea, cardiovascular complications, and central nervous system side effects such as seizures and psychosis.
There is also evidence that Bristol-Myers Squibb was aware of serious health risks posed by Tequin® long before the decision to stop manufacturing it. It had already supplemented its labeling with the warning that diabetics and those with kidney problems should not take Tequin®.
In July 2003, Health Canada published an article in the Canadian Adverse Reaction Newsletter, reporting a study involving more than 15,000 patients using Tequin®. The report documented a marked increase in the occurrence of blood sugar disorders among them. When Bristol-Myers Squibb failed to act, the FDA released a report in early 2006, documenting blood sugar disorder risks attributed to Tequin® based upon a Canadian medical study featured in the New England Journal of Medicine. The study indicated that people over age 65 taking Tequin® showed more than a four-fold increase in the risk of being treated in the hospital for low blood sugar compared with people who were on an older class of antibiotics.
The study also suggested, among other things, that before taking Tequin® you should:
If you or someone close to you has used Tequin®, a medical examination should be scheduled immediately. Do not delay in seeking medical attention, as prompt diagnosis and treatment may help to avoid irreparable damage. If you are diagnosed with diabetes or other diseases and conditions associated with the use of Tequin®, you may be entitled to recover substantial financial compensation. However, all legal claims are subject to time limits, and delay in filing a claim may result in the forfeiture of your right to compensation.
Your physician can attend to your medical requirements, and an experienced and qualified Tequin® litigation attorney can help to protect your legal rights. Please contact one of the law firms listed on this site today. A dedicated and skilled Tequin® class action lawyer is standing by to fight for the compensation that you deserve and to which you are entitled.
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