Were you or a loved one prescribed Taxotere during cancer chemotherapy treatment? Do you currently suffer from persistent watery eyes? If the answer to both of these questions is yes, you may be eligible for compensation in the state of New Mexico.
Most medical treatments have side effects. However, side effects should usually cease when treatment stops. When drug manufacturer Sanofi-Aventis put Taxotere on the medical market, they did not disclose that it caused a side effect of permanent watery eyes.
Sanofi-Aventis should have been aware of this side effect when they sent Taxotere to the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for approval, but they failed to disclose it. This omission has caused countless New Mexico Taxotere patients to suffer from chronic watery eyes.
The New Mexico Taxotere eye injury lawyers from Hotze Runkle PLLC are currently pursuing legal action against Sanofi-Aventis to hold the company accountable and help secure compensation for those who took Taxotere. If you were given Taxotere and currently suffer from persistent watery eyes, you likely qualify to be a part of our lawsuit. Take our quiz today to determine next steps.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
Hiring an experienced New Mexico Taxotere eye injury lawyer gives you the best chance of receiving compensation from Sanofi-Aventis. Pharmaceutical companies are powerful, well-resourced, and hire teams of lawyers to defend them from claims like yours. An experienced attorney will have the skills and knowledge to fight on your behalf and hold the company responsible.
You should not accept payment from Sanofi-Aventis without first consulting a lawyer. When you accept payment, you will have to sign an agreement releasing Sanofi-Aventis from any further liability. This means that even if your symptoms worsen and require further medical treatment, you will not be able to pursue any further compensation.
Since we are experienced New Mexico Taxotere eye injury lawyers, Hotze Runkle PLLC will have a good idea of how much compensation you can expect to receive based on your circumstances. We will be able to advise you on when you should accept a settlement, and when you should keep fighting.
If you or a loved one has gone through cancer and chemotherapy, you know the toll it takes on your physical, mental, and financial well-being. You shouldn’t have to continue to suffer from a preventable side effect. Hotze Runkle PLLC will handle all legal aspects of your case while you rest, recover, and spend time with your loved ones.
Why Should I Choose Hotze Runkle PLLC?
Hotze Runkle PLLC is a team of highly experienced New Mexico Taxotere injury lawyers. We are passionate about fighting on behalf of our clients and holding companies like Sanofi-Aventis accountable. Unlike many other product liability law firms, we are highly experienced in the specific area of Taxotere eye injury law. This gives us the ability to hire the best expert witnesses, ask the right questions, and fight strategically against Sanofi-Aventis.
Many people worry that hiring a lawyer will be too expensive. At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we work on a contingency-fee basis, which means that we take a percentage of your overall compensation amount at the very end of your case. We do not bill weekly, hourly, or monthly for our work on your case — you will not receive invoices or bills from us until your case is over. If we lose your case, then you don’t owe us any money. You can take our free quiz today to see if you qualify to be a part of our case.
What Is Taxotere?
Taxotere is a chemotherapy drug that is most commonly used to treat breast cancer. Doctors also prescribe it to treat forms of prostate, lung, and head/neck cancer. Taxotere works by preventing the development of new cancerous cells. Doctors administer the drug intravenously (through an IV drip). Depending on a patient’s prognosis, Taxotere is administered either once a week, once every two weeks, or once every three weeks. Research has established that the side effect of watery eyes can be present regardless of the frequency at which you were given Taxotere.
Many pharmaceuticals have unpleasant side effects. In particular, most forms of cancer chemotherapy treatments can cause side effects like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and hair loss. An important decision that a patient must make with their doctor is whether a drug’s potential side effects are worth its potential benefits. It’s critical that both doctors and patients are fully aware of all of a drug’s known side effects so that they can develop a fully informed treatment plan.
Even though Sanofi-Aventis introduced Taxotere in the late 90s, it wasn’t until 2014 that they added permanent eye-watering as a potential side effect of the drug. Sanofi-Aventis should have been aware of this side effect when the drug was first marketed, but failed to disclose it to the Federal Drug Administration (FDA). If cancer patients and their doctors were aware of this side effect, they could have chosen to explore other chemotherapy options. Because of Sanofi-Aventis’ harmful actions, countless New Mexico cancer patients and survivors now suffer from permanent eye-watering.
What Are the Side Effects of Taxotere?
Taxotere is known to cause side effects associated with most types of chemotherapy, such as vomiting and hair loss. As previously discussed, Taxotere also causes severe and permanent eye-watering, which is called epiphora. Epiphora is usually caused by a syndrome called canalicular stenosis.
Healthy eyes produce a tear film across the eye every time you blink. This helps keep your eyes hydrated and clear of dust and dirt. This tear film then drains through small canals called the canaliculus. Canalicular stenosis occurs when the canaliculus becomes obstructed or blocked, which prevents the tears from draining back into your body. The tears then overflow and run down the face.
Medical researchers found that Taxotere was present in the tears produced by those being treated with the drug. When their tears drained through the canaliculus, it’s believed that Taxotere caused inflammation and scarring to the small tube. This scarring then led to a thickening of the canaliculus, and in some cases, a permanent closure.
Canalicular stenosis and epiphora can cause these symptoms:
- Excessive eye watering
- The feeling of uncontrollable crying
- Blurry vision
- Swelling of eyelids
- Light sensitivity
- Eye infections
- Vision loss
To some, eye-watering may not seem like a very severe side effect. However, those who suffer from this condition know the extent to which it can disrupt daily life. Epiphora sufferers may find it difficult to drive, read, watch TV, or apply makeup. Since epiphora can cause the appearance of uncontrolled crying, those with epiphora may find it embarrassing and stressful to go out in public.
Is Canalicular Stenosis Treatable?
If symptoms are recognized early enough, canalicular stenosis is relatively easy to treat. If a patient is currently undergoing Taxotere chemotherapy treatment and begins to have persistent watery eyes, they should see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible. An ophthalmologist can place a temporary stent (a small tube) in the canaliculus in order to prevent the structure from closing entirely. The stent is then removed after Taxotere treatment ceases.
Unfortunately, because Sanofi-Aventis has gone to great lengths to diminish the link between Taxotere and canalicular stenosis, many doctors and patients were and continue to be unaware of the permanency of this side effect. Cancer patients and doctors may believe that eye-watering will stop once Taxotere treatment ceases.
If canalicular stenosis is not caught early enough, the only option may be an expensive and invasive surgery called Dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR). DCR uses a small, permanent glass stent called a Jones tube to create a channel through which tears can drain directly into the nasal cavity. This surgery can be effective, but can also cause side effects and complications, including:
- Uncontrolled bleeding during and after surgery
- Permanent facial scarring
- Issues with the Jones tube, such as rejection, migration, or obstruction
- Tissue damage
How Much Money Is My Case Worth?
The ultimate amount of money you can recover depends on several factors, such as the severity of your eye condition and whether you need surgery. In general, those who file product liability lawsuits are eligible to receive compensation for two kinds of damages: economic and non-economic.
Economic damages are your actual expenses, such as medical bills. If your condition has made it impossible for you to do your job, you can also ask for compensation for lost wages.
Non-economic damages are the pain, suffering, and emotional distress caused by your eye condition. It can be difficult to assign an exact dollar amount to non-economic damages, so we recommend keeping a journal in which you document the ways in which your chronic eye-watering affects your daily life. This can help establish the degree to which you have suffered as a result of Taxotere.
Take Our Quiz to See if You Qualify for Compensation
At Hotze Runkle PLLC, we believe that Sanofi-Aventis needs to be held accountable for their actions, and that patients deserve justice. We know that money cannot completely heal your injuries or make up for a company’s wrongdoing, but it can help make you more comfortable. Take our quiz today to see if you qualify.