Thyroid eye disease is an illness that causes several symptoms, including bulging eyes and double vision. It can also lead to vision loss and has no known cure. It is an unpredictable autoimmune inflammatory disease that can be sight-threatening. Tepezza is one of the most renowned medications for the issue.
However, some health concerns are being raised around the use of Tepezza. This guide provides a comprehensive overview of thyroid eye disease (TED), Tepezza, and the potential legal recourse for those who have experienced adverse effects.
Understanding Thyroid Eye Disease and Tepezza
If you’ve been diagnosed with thyroid eye disease, it’s important to know what your options are for treatment. The first step in deciding which treatment option is best for you is understanding exactly what thyroid eye disease is and how it develops.
Most patients have a mild, self-limited form of the disease. 20-30% of patients experience moderate or severe disease and 3-5% may develop sight-threatening conditions. It occurs when the tissues around your eyes become inflamed as a result of an autoimmune disorder.
TED can cause inflammation inside or outside of your eyelids, or both at once. This inflammation causes symptoms like bulging eyes, redness around the eyes, and even double vision in some cases.
Tepezza is a medication used for treating TED. As mentioned on the TorHoerman Law website, Tepezza works by blocking IGF-1R. It is a type of protein that causes TED. The website also states that the drug was approved by the FDA in January 2020. However, some studies found that this medication can have significant side effects.
Even Tepezza users reported having problems with hearing and vision loss. Soon, many people who used this medication and suffered damage started filing lawsuits against Horizon Pharmaceuticals. The plaintiffs claimed that the manufacturer failed to warn them about the potential health hazards.
Tepezza Lawsuits: The Basics
The Tepezza lawsuit is a class action lawsuit against the makers of Tepezza. The lawsuit alleges that the manufacturer did not properly warn patients about the risks associated with using this medication.
Many users who suffered any consequences have already filed a Tepezza lawsuit. In fact, all the cases are now consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL). By the time of writing this article (October 2023), there were a total of 54 Tepezza cases in this MDL. These lawsuits are still in the nascent stage.
The Process of Filing a Tepezza Lawsuit
The process of filing a Tepezza lawsuit is not simple, but it’s not difficult either. The most important thing you can do is hire an experienced attorney who knows how to handle these cases. Your lawyer will take care of all the paperwork and other aspects related to filing your claim. Thus, you don’t have to worry about anything except recovering from your thyroid eye disease symptoms.
Once your case has been filed, several steps must be taken before settlement or trial:
- Discovery (when both sides exchange information)
- Mediation (if both parties agree)
- Arbitration (if they don’t agree)
- Pre-trial motions (if they still can’t come up with an agreement)
- The trial itself if nothing else works out before then
Finding Legal Representation
The importance of finding a lawyer with experience in product liability is obvious. If you have a thyroid eye disease, you have likely been using the medication for years. There are many other people out there who also suffer from this condition. Your lawyer needs to understand what went wrong with the drug and how it could affect others like you.
Here are the steps to find legal representation for a Tepezza lawsuit:
Research attorneys: Start by researching attorneys who specialize in pharmaceutical litigation, medical malpractice, or personal injury cases. You can do this online, through bar association websites, or by asking for referrals from friends, family, or other lawyers.
Check qualifications: Verify the attorney’s credentials, experience, and reputation. Look for attorneys who have experience with similar cases or have a proven track record of success in medical product liability cases.
Consultations: Schedule consultations with multiple attorneys. Many lawyers offer free initial consultations. During these meetings, discuss the specifics of your case, your concerns, and your expectations. This is also an opportunity to gauge their knowledge and experience.
Ask questions: Ask potential lawyers about their experience with Tepezza cases or similar pharmaceutical product cases. Inquire about their success rate, the approach they would take with your case, and what kind of compensation you might be entitled to.
Fees and costs: Discuss the attorney’s fees and payment structure. Some attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they only get paid if you win your case. Make sure you understand all the potential costs involved.
References: Ask for references from past clients or check for online reviews and testimonials. This can give you insights into the attorney’s track record and how they interact with their clients.
Local vs. national firms: Consider whether you want to work with a local attorney or a national law firm. Local attorneys may offer a more personalized experience, while national firms may have more resources and experience in handling complex cases.
Legal aid and pro bono services: If you cannot afford legal representation, explore options for legal aid or pro bono services. Some law firms or organizations provide free legal assistance for individuals who meet certain criteria.
Trust your instincts: Choose an attorney you feel comfortable with and trust. You’ll be working closely with this person, so it’s essential to have a good working relationship.
Review the retainer agreement: Once you’ve selected an attorney, carefully review and sign the retainer agreement, which outlines the terms and conditions of your legal representation.
The Role of Tepezza Manufacturers and Regulatory Agencies
Here’s an overview of the roles of manufacturers and regulatory agencies in Tepezza lawsuits:
Production and quality control: The manufacturers of Tepezza are responsible for ensuring the drug is produced by regulatory standards. Any deviation from these standards can lead to lawsuits if patients suffer harm as a result.
Labeling and marketing: Manufacturers must provide accurate and comprehensive information about Tepezza’s benefits, risks, and proper use. Failure to do so or misleading marketing practices may lead to legal action.
Product liability: Manufacturers may face product liability lawsuits if Tepezza is found to be defective or if patients experience unexpected side effects. In such cases, plaintiffs may argue that the product was unreasonably dangerous or did not meet established safety standards.
Duty to warn: Manufacturers have a legal obligation to provide adequate warnings about potential side effects or risks associated with Tepezza. Failure to do so can result in legal actions based on a failure-to-warn theory.
FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration): The FDA is responsible for approving and regulating drugs like Tepezza. FDA approved the drug in January 2020. This decision came after the conclusions of two studies conducted on 170 patients having active TED. These were randomly selected to receive Tepezza or another medication: placebo.
The results showed that patients who received Tepezza medication showed more than a 2mm reduction in proptosis. The numbers were close to 71% in the first and 83% in the second study. The results were significantly better compared to the 20% and 10% of placebo administration, respectively.
Monitoring and post-market surveillance: Regulatory agencies are expected to continue monitoring the safety and efficacy of approved drugs, including Tepezza after they reach the market. If issues or safety concerns arise, and regulatory agencies fail to take appropriate action, they may be implicated in legal actions.
We hope this article has helped understand the nature of TED, as well as its potential treatment options. If you or someone close to you has been diagnosed with this disease and then experienced side effects, you should seek legal advice. This will help you understand the legal aspect better and help you fight for justice.