Paresthesia Lawsuit Filed Over Levaquin Nerve Damage Side Effects

According to allegations raised in a new lawsuit filed against Johnson & Johnson, nerve damage side effects associated with Levaquin caused an Illinois woman to suffer long-term paresthesia.

The complaint (PDF) was filed by Kelly Seim in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on April 12, naming both Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen Pharmaceuticals subsidiary as defendants.

Seim indicates that she was prescribed a generic version of the popular antibiotic in October 2013, and began suffering symptoms of peripheral neuropathy, which is a form of nerve damage that has been linked to Levaquin and other fluoroquinolone-based drugs. Specifically, Seim indicates that she developed paresthesia from Levaquin, which is a type of peripheral neuropathy that causes feelings of “pins and needles” in the limbs.

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The lawsuit indicates Seim did not discover the link between Levaquin and the nerve damage until April 2014, when she received her diagnosis. According to the complaint, this was in part due to the manufacturer’s long-standing efforts to conceal Levaquin nerve damage risks.

Seim presents claims of failure to warn, strict liability, negligence, breach of warranty, fraud, negligent representation and fraudulent concealment.

The case joins a growing number of similar Levaquin nerve damage lawsuits filed in courts throughout the U.S. in recent years, alleging that Johnson & Johnson misled doctors and patients, withholding information about reports of peripheral neuropathy that continued in some patients long after they stopped using the antibiotic.

In the federal court system, there are more than 350 similar lawsuits involving peripheral neuropathy from Levaquin, as well as other fluoroquinolone-based antibiotics that are part of the same class of medications, including Avelox lawsuits and Cipro lawsuits.

The cases are currently centralized as part of a federal MDL, or multidistrict litigation, before U.S. District Judge John R. Tunheim in the District of Minnesota, and it is expected that Cody’s complaint will be transferred into these coordinated pretrial proceedings.

As antibiotic nerve damage lawyers continue to review and file cases in the coming months and years, it is ultimately expected that several thousand lawsuits will be involved in the litigation, each alleging that plaintiffs have been left with permanent peripheral neuropathy following use of the drugs.

Given the similar claims raised in the complaints, Judge Tunheim is expected to schedule a series of “bellwether” trials in the MDL, which would be designed to gauge how juries may respond to certain evidence and testimony that is likely to be repeated throughout the cases.

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