Fosamax is an oral bisphosphonate intended to help reduce bone loss and fracture risk associated with osteoporosis, typically in postmenopausal women. However, long-term Fosamax use can cause very unusual mid-shaft femur fractures, now referred to in the medical literature as bisphosphonate-induced atypical femur fractures. These fractures often occur without any precipitating trauma. In fact, many of our clients have sustained complete, displaced femur fractures while simply standing or walking. Needless to say, these were quite traumatic experiences for our clients, and nearly all required extensive rodding surgeries to repair. As news of these fractures spread, fewer Fosamax prescriptions were written. Although some physicians still prescribe Fosamax, they typically limit treatment to 2-3 years at a time.
Although Fosamax was first released on the American market in 1995, the label did not contain any type of femur fracture warning until the FDA ordered Merck to include one in October 2010. Today, the Fosamax label warns of low trauma, atypical femur fractures in its “Warnings and Precautions” section. But for some women, the 2010 label change is of little consequence, as the residual fragility effects of long term Fosamax use can last years after they stop taking the drug. It is not until the femur has had years of healthy remodeling after Fosamax is discontinued that the femur fracture risk begins to diminish.
We continue to investigate, review and file Fosamax cases involving femur fractures. A multidistrict litigation (MDL) court was established in US District Court, District of New Jersey. A similar state multicounty litigation court was also established in New Jersey. Last September, all of the New Jersey state court cases were reallocated from Atlantic County to Middlesex County, N.J. A similar multicounty litigation court has been established in California.
If you have a prospective client, friend or relative who suffered a femur fracture after taking Fosamax, a lawyer in our firm would like to speak with you. If you have any questions about this litigation, contact David Dearing, who is in our Mass Torts Section, at 800-898-2034 or by email at David.Dearing@beasleyallen.com.
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