Taxotere is a chemotherapy drug useful in treating many types of cancer, such as stomach cancer, head cancer, prostate cancer, neck cancer, and breast cancer. Sanofi-Aventis is a pharmaceutical company that created this drug and manufactures it for use in cancer patients. The negative side effects that develop were never included on original warning labels. You could recover significant financial compensation if you experienced any unexpected symptoms during your chemo treatment with Taxotere. At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we have a team that can represent you in your case and fight for the justice you rightfully deserve.
A common side effect of Taxotere is watery eyes. It often starts during chemotherapy and worsens over time. This is due to an adverse reaction between the drug and the patient’s tears as the drug travels through their body. It irritates a structure within the ocular cavity that’s responsible for moving tears to the nasal cavity. The canaliculus eventually becomes inflamed, causing watery eyes. A serious medical condition could develop without prompt and adequate treatment.
Symptoms You Might Notice During Chemotherapy
The first symptom to develop is called epiphora, watery eyes. During normal functioning, tears travel from the tear duct into the nasal cavity. However, inflammation of the canaliculus blocks the tears, causing them to build up and settle on the eye. When the person blinks, they get released uncontrollably.
Inflammation can result in chronic infections, causing additional damage to the canaliculus (there’s one in each eyelid). They become obstructed and prevent any tears from passing through. Worsening symptoms can eventually lead to the development of Canalicular Stenosis. It causes a range of symptoms, including:
- More eye infections
- Cloudy eye lens
- Central vision loss
- Blurry vision
- Dry eyes
- Light sensitivity
- Eyelid swelling
- Excessive eye-watering
Everyone experiences these symptoms differently. It doesn’t affect some people that much, and they can go about their normal routine. However, others complain that the symptoms have a significant impact on their daily life. It becomes a challenge maintaining employment, driving, and performing simple tasks. It can be a debilitating medical issue that diminishes the quality of life.
Taxotere Causes An Adverse Reaction When It Interacts With Tears
Your doctor can recommend a Taxotere chemo regimen once a week, once every other week, or once every three weeks. You can receive it intravenously or orally. The frequency of receiving the chemo drug doesn’t seem to affect whether you develop Canalicular Stenosis symptoms.
As Taxotere travels through a person’s body, its secretions come in direct contact with different bodily fluids, such as blood, urine, and tears. It has a negative interaction with tears while it’s moving through the canaliculus, resulting in inflammation. Without immediate medical treatment to alleviate the inflammation, Canalicular Stenosis can form, blocking the normal flow of tears. The obstructions cause further damage to the canaliculus, and they begin closing. As soon as they close, there’s nothing you can do to open then back up again.
You Might Be Able to Manage Your Symptoms
Canalicular Stenosis isn’t curable. Partial or total closure of the canaliculus is permanent. However, a doctor could perform a surgical procedure to manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.
During dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR), the surgeon will make an incision between the eye and nose to access the structures underneath the skin. They can use these structures to create an entirely different passageway for your tears to bypass the obstructed canaliculus towards the nasal cavity. Some situations might require the placement of a stent to keep the canaliculus open and prevent symptoms from recurring.
DCR might not be useful in extreme cases of Canalicular Stenosis. Sometimes, severe damage prevents the doctor from using existing structures to facilitate the flow of tears. Instead, they might turn to a different treatment option. Conjunctivodacryocystorhinostomy (CDCR) requires inserting a tiny glass tube so tears can bypass the damaged canaliculus.
There are potentially debilitating risks with both surgeries. Not only are they invasive and expensive medical procedures, but they can also cause various symptoms, such as:
- Damage to tissues and eye structures
- Significant and permanent facial scars
- Uncontrollable hemorrhaging during and after surgery
- Migrating or displaced stent
- Eye infections
- Ineffective surgery
You should explore your options to alleviate your suffering. Canalicular Stenosis can disrupt every area of your life. Your opthalmologist can evaluate your health to determine if either surgery is right for you.
Seeking Compensation from the Drug Company
Originally, doctors and patients didn’t know about the dangerous side effects associated with Taxotere. Sanofi tested the drug before marketing it to the public but didn’t disclose the potential risks. They continued to manufacture it without printing adequate warning labels. They also never announced their findings to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It wasn’t until years later, when medical researchers discovered the adverse reaction between Taxotere and tears, that Sanofi finally began listing Canalicular Stenosis on the warning labels.
The manufacturer’s negligence led to your diagnosis. You might face a long road ahead while treating your symptoms. You shouldn’t have to pay for your medical treatment and associated costs when their actions are to blame. You have a right to pursue the losses you suffered, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Mental anguish
- Long-term disability
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If you want to file a lawsuit against Sanofi, there’s a statute of limitations you must comply with, which is a strict deadline. The statute of limitations in Arizona is two years. That means you must file your lawsuit within two years after the date you sustained an injury from Taxotere. If you don’t initiate a legal case on time, you could lose your right to hold the drug company liable for their negligence.
Contact An Experienced Taxotere Canalicular Stenosis Lawyer
Hotze Runkle PLLC has been representing injured clients since opening our firm in 2007. We have a team of dedicated and compassionate attorneys that will fight hard for the justice and compensation you deserve. You will not be alone during this traumatic experience. We will advocate for your rights and help you hold Sanofi accountable for their actions.
To learn more about our legal services or find out if you qualify for a lawsuit, take our Taxotere quiz right now.