Gadolinium Lawsuits Increasing
Lawsuits over gadolinium contrast agents and their links to the painful skin and connective tissue disease NFS / NFD (Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis / Nephrogenic Fibrosing Dermopathy) are increasing. Here are some useful facts about gadolinium, its dangers and the lawsuits that have been filed.
Here are some useful facts about gadolinium:
- What is it? Gadolinium is a contrast agent, or dye, used in MRIs (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and MRAs (Magnetic Resonance Angiography) to enhance images.
- When is it dangerous? While many patients’ systems simply excrete gadolinium naturally, many others’ do not. When gadolinium stays in a patient’s system, it can lead to the potentially fatal disease called NFS / NFD (Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis / Nephrogenic Fibrosing Dermopathy).
Last year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) told the makers of gadolinium to include a black box warning on the drugs and warned patients with kidney disease to avoid using the drugs altogether. A black box warning is the most serious warning issued by the FDA. In addition, numerous studies from respected hospitals such as Yale and Massachusetts General have been released showing gadolinium’s link to NSF/NFD.
- What are the effects of NSF/NFD? NSF/NFD, a disease that affects skin and connective tissue, can cause patients’ skin to thicken to the point that they cannot move. The condition can spread to other parts of the body and can be fatal. Unfortunately, the disease was not discovered until approximately 11 years ago and the medical community has limited information on how it can be treated – if at all. For additional information on NSF/NFD, see the FDA’s website at http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/PostmarketDrugSafetyInformationforPatientsandProviders/ucm142894.htm.
- What drugs are involved? The drugs involved are OmniScan (gadodiamide), OptiMark (gadoversetamide), Prohance (gadoteridol), Magnevist (gadopentate dimeglumine) and MultiHance (gadobenate dimeglumine).
- What manufacturers are involved? The following manufacturers have been named in many of the gadolinium lawsuits across the nation: Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals, Bracco Diagnostics, GE Healthcare and Mallinckrodt.
- Where does the litigation stand? According to news reports, approximately 400 lawsuits have been filed across the nation. Nearly 300 of those are pending in Multidistrict litigation, or MDL, which is different than a class action lawsuit because the individual cases will be transferred back to their original courts if the MDL doesn’t resolve the issue.
Have you been injured due to gadolinium? If so, contact an attorney whose practice focuses in this area of the law to discuss your situation. Consultations are free, without obligation and are strictly confidential. To speak with a lawyer about what your options are, please click here. We may be able to help.