Why is the Lipitor Lawsuit Only for Women?
Written by Stephen Fields on October 9, 2013
New onset diabetes can occur in any individual using a statin. What is significant is that at least one study suggests that women may be at greater risk than men. For this reason, the current federal multi-district litigation (Lipitor MDL 2502) has been limited to women who have developed Type 2 diabetes after taking the brand name drug, Lipitor.
At this time, thousands of claims have been made in the Lipitor lawsuit for women, and that number is growing. More women are discovering that the drug they were told was safe may have exposed them to a lifelong illness.
Women May Be at a Much Greater Risk for Lipitor Diabetes
Lipitor has been a household name for years. With more than 50 million prescriptions filled and total sales exceeding $130 billion, it has become one of the most profitable drugs in U.S. history. Unfortunately, a growing body of research points to a connection between Lipitor and diabetes in women.
In recent years, researchers have begun to suspect that women – particularly older women – may be at greater risk of developing diabetes than men while undergoing statin therapy (Statins are a class of drugs that includes Lipitor).
A 2012 study in JAMA Internal Medicine found that women using statins like Lipitor were 50% more likely to develop new onset diabetes than women who did not take statins.1
The study followed the progress of 153,840 female patients between the ages of 50 and 79 years of age. Some of the women were given statins to treat high LDL cholesterol levels. Other women in the study were not given the drugs.
Follow-up was conducted at years 1, 3, 6, and 9. The researchers monitored the incidence of type 2 diabetes among both groups of patients – those who received statin therapy and those who did not. They found that nearly 10% of the former group showed signs of the disease after 9 years. Only 6.4% of the latter group showed similar signs.
From these numbers, the researchers concluded that postmenopausal women using drugs like Lipitor were 50% more likely to be afflicted with diabetes. The risk was far greater than that which had been observed in studies lacking gender or age parameters.
Pfizer Failed To Warn Women About Lipitor Diabetes Problems
A majority of the Lipitor lawsuits awaiting trial were filed on behalf of injured women who claim that using the drug triggered their diabetes. Some argue that, prior to taking Lipitor, they maintained a healthy weight, stuck to a healthy diet, and enjoyed ongoing exercise.
Despite their adherence to a healthy lifestyle, women such as Sandra Sanderson Havens were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes after taking Lipitor.
There is no known cure for diabetes. Women who are diagnosed with the illness are forced to live with it for the rest of their lives, carefully monitoring their blood sugar levels to avoid suffering complications, such as nerve damage, kidney disease, and eye problems.
In 2012, the FDA ordered Pfizer, as well as other statin manufacturers, to update their respective warning labels. They were to include information about the increased risk of diabetes. However, the label on Lipitor remains vague. Nowhere is it mentioned that using the drug might cause the disease. Patients are not even cautioned to monitor their blood sugar levels while taking it, a step that could help to prevent the onset of diabetes.
Lipitor Diabetes Lawsuits Being Filed by Women
Women have accused Pfizer of failing to provide adequate warning about the danger. They allege the company knew about the danger, or should have known about it, and neglected to inform the public. Instead, Pfizer advertised its cholesterol medication as safe, even as research indicated it was not.
Some of the pending lawsuits also claim the company knowingly hid the risk of diabetes from the public. They claim that Pfizer knew the medication was defective and dangerous, yet continued to promote it as safe and effective. According to plaintiffs, the company’s active concealment of key information about the risks of using Lipitor constitutes fraud.
We believe that Pfizer should be held accountable for any harm it is legally responsible for. If you were diagnosed with new onset diabetes while taking Lipitor, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. Our Lipitor attorneys are currently reviewing claims from women who have been seriously injured by the drug.
There is limited time to file a claim. Contact our offices at your earliest convenience for a free consultation. We’re here to listen as you describe your experience with Lipitor, and advise you regarding your legal options. Call today— 1-888-578-4755.1. Statin Use and Risk of Diabetes Mellitus in Postmenopausal Women in the Women’s Health Initiative