Taxotere is a drug that many cancer survivors know well. Usually, it plays a role in a part of a cocktail of medications used during chemotherapy. The goal of using this anti-cancer medication is to eliminate cancer, usually within the breast tissue. Now it’s used only in very specific cases, but it has caused some legal trouble for big Pharma. Instead of coming with side effects of Taxotere that would subside, or acknowledging that they were permanent, the manufacturer failed to share a few things.
The biggest concern of many breast cancer survivors who used Taxotere as part of their treatment is permanent hair loss.
What Exactly is Taxotere?
Taxotere is an anti-cancer from plant alkaloids that is given through IV or an injection. The IV can come in smaller doses at higher frequencies, although the injection is given in a dose once every three weeks.
This particular plant alkaloid is in treatment for lung cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer, neck cancer, and stomach cancer. In those situations, it comes with similar side effects and results as it does in breast cancer. Although breast cancer survivors have been the greater portion of people filing lawsuits against Taxotere, they’re certainly not the only ones.
What happens is that the dosage or treatment will vary based on the person, their type of cancer, and other factors. This drug came from a very specific type of Yew tree and was approved for cancer treatment in 1996. It’s remained one of the most popular chemotherapy drugs because it substantially raises the survival rate for patients. It also impacted the length of time it took for tumors to progress.
Side Effects of Taxotere Known to the Public
The most common side effects of Taxotere include a long list that would put most honey-do requests to shame. Not only does it come with the traditionally found chemotherapy troubles such as nausea and vomiting but others as well.
When taking Taxotere, you can expect:
- Weight gain through fluid retention
- Mouth sores
- Yellowing of the eyes and skin
- Hair loss – more on this in a moment
- Changes to color and texture to finger and toenails
- Loss of nails
- Numbness in fingers and toes
- Joint, bone, and muscle pain
- Changes in livre function
- Increased risk of blood-loss
- And more
But, physicians still use it because it’s effective. Breast cancer does have a high recovery rate, and many would argue that Taxotere contributed to that rate. However, these are only the known side effects. What Taxotere told many within the medical community, and then was passed onto the patients was that these are temporary.
That’s right. They reassured everyone that the changes in liver function, hair loss, and nail loss were temporary. The claim, even still after tons of lawsuits, is that these are only temporary struggles for the patients. However, that’s not the case.
Taxotere has a much higher rate of chemo-induced permanent alopecia than other drugs that are similar. The issue that survivors have isn’t that the drug helped them beat cancer. It’s that years later, sometimes even ten or more years, they’re seen as sick. Hair loss is a type of disfigurement, and when people see a woman in her mid-30s or 40s without hair, they assume that they’re sick.
These patients are upset that their medical team didn’t know about the risk, and that there wasn’t a discussion. Instead, they were told they’re in remission, then weeks later, have no new hair growth. Months later, they’re wondering what’s wrong and what to do about the situation, but there is no cure or treatment for this type of alopecia.
Men have also filed lawsuits, voiced complaints, and spoken out about the injustice of misinformation. If you’re a survivor with chemo-induced alopecia, then look at the options you have to hold these drug manufacturers responsible.
Contacting Rueb Stoller Daniel
Whenever you’re ready to take action against Taxotere manufacturers, then you should contact Rueb Stoller Daniel. Our attorneys specialize in these types of cases where we can assess what information you deserved to have before agreeing to the medical treatment plan. You, as a patient, deserved to know the real side effects of Taxotere.
Permanent hair loss isn’t just about the loss in quality of life. It can change how you feel about yourself and then come with high costs of wigs as well. While many women and men live with persistent major alopecia happily, not everyone can. Reach out to Rueb Stoller Daniel soon!