According to documents filed in current litigation, the company sought to bury the risk of permanent hair loss in breast cancer patients to increase sales, a scheme that had a real impact on health outcomes. Many patients were never told about the less-expensive, equally effective alternative drug, Taxol. A BreastCancer.org study shows that women who received the less expensive drug, Taxol, had a higher survival rate than women who were treated with Taxotere.
While temporary hair loss is a recognized and accepted side effect of chemotherapy treatments, permanent baldness and persistent thinning hair should not be when there are options that are as effective or more effective with less severe side effects. This information should have been made available to women and their doctors so they could have made a more informed choice.
Lawsuits filed against Sanofi-Aventis, the manufacturer and marketer of Taxotere claim numerous legal actions against the drug maker that include:
Taxotere is a synthetic chemotherapy drug often used to treat breast cancer. It was falsely promoted by its manufacturer, Sanofi-Aventis, as a more effective treatment option than the already established chemotherapy drug Taxol.
As a later to market drug, the Sanofi-Aventis sales team illegally pushed inaccurate marketing material to doctors and other medical decision makers stating that their drug was more effective than Taxol even though it was actually equally effective at best. The FDA later stated it was not more effective than their competitor Taxol and subsequently sent Sanofi-Aventis a letter reprimanding them for their unethical and illegal business practices.
Sanofi-Aventis also intentionally failed to warn doctors and women about the risk of permanent hair loss associated with this drug even though they were aware of this devastating side effect as early as 2002 and very likely earlier.
Additional Taxotere Resources
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