Posted In: Drug Litigation

Taxotere (docetaxel anhydrous) is an anti-cancer chemotherapy medication that inhibits the growth process of cancer cells in the body. Manufactured by Sanofi Aventis US, Taxotere is the most popular prescription medication in the “taxane” class—a family of drugs that work by slowing abnormal cell growth. 

Though used to treat prostate, stomach, and lung cancer (among others), Taxotere is most commonly prescribed to treat breast cancer patients in locally advanced or metastatic stages of the disease. Taxotere can be used alone or in combination with cyclophosphamide and doxorubicin to target cases of operable node-positive breast cancer. In fact, an estimated 75 percent of breast cancer patients are prescribed Taxotere. The favorability of the drug stems from its extended periods between treatments; comparable chemotherapy drugs require patients to endure weekly treatments, while Taxotere only requires treatments every three weeks. 

That said, a growing number of individuals are filing lawsuits against Sanofi for claims that Taxotere leads to the onset of alopecia—a condition leading to permanent hair loss or severe thinning of the hair. Lawsuits claim that Sanofi neglected to warn U.S. patients of the risks related to developing alopecia.

The warning label on Taxotere does list the following conditions: 

  • Hepatotoxicity 
  • Neutropenia
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Fluid retention
  • Fatal Toxicity

Alopecia can adversely affect hair growth in all areas on an individual’s body, including the head, eyelashes, eyebrows, facial hair, and pubic region. Taxotere’s connection with permanent hair loss has been devastating for patients and has contributed to a negative stigma. Studies have found that temporary hair loss is one of the main concerns that cancer patients report before undergoing chemotherapy. Claims against Sanofi allege that the company misled consumers by claiming that any hair loss experienced after the use of Taxotere would be temporary, with no risk of possible permanent side effects. 

Slater Slater Schulman LLP is currently evaluating potential Taxotere claims. If you’ve been diagnosed with alopecia following a course of Taxotere, the attorneys at Slater Slater Schulman LLP are here to help. Please call our office at 1-800-251-6990, or fill out the form on this page, and our office will contact you to discuss your case.   

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