Every medicine is aimed at treating a condition that causes pain and suffering to a person. TED (Thyroid Eye Disease) is an autoimmune inflammatory disorder that affects the soft tissues in your eye socket because of thyroid dysfunction. To treat this ailment, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the drug Tepezza in 2020.
TED generates antibodies that attack the muscles linked with eyelid and eye movement. It results in inflammation, pain, double vision, bulging eyes, eyesight loss, and retraction of eyelids. However, in recent times, people from various parts of the globe have filed many lawsuits against Tepezza, alleging that the medicine led to hearing loss.
Most plaintiffs in their lawsuit claimed that the manufacturer was aware of this hazard and didn’t inform the doctors or customers about tinnitus and hearing loss as an after-effect of this drug use. In this article, we will shed light on the negative effects of this medicine on human health and how victims can resolve the situation at hand.
The Tragic Story of Patrice McCracken
Various case reports and studies have highlighted the fact that a series of objective and subjective hearing functions take place during teprotumumab treatment. A few experts think that Tepezza results in hearing issues in almost 65% of patients who use the drug.
In November 2023, AboutLawsuits.com reported the account of Patrice McCracken, a Texas woman who filed her Tepezza lawsuit against Horizon Therapeutics. In her complaint, she stated that only if her doctor warned her about the relevance of getting a Tepezza hearing test before and after she received the drug, then the permanent damage caused to her ears could be avoided.
Patrice had filed her lawsuit in the Northern District of Illinois, alleging that the manufacturer was aware of this risk but failed to inform her or even the doctors. She further added that there were no adequate instructions for the medical community and users regarding the actions to be deployed to recognize and avert this damage altogether.
She shared that in July 2021, she developed TED and was prescribed to use Tepezza, which she did until December 2021. During this phase, she didn’t opt in for the before and after tests that were necessary to test the side effects and efficacy of Tepezza. Therefore, her treatment with this drug didn’t stop, and that gradually caused permanent damage to the sensory cells located in the inner ear.
The lawsuit highlighted that, despite being aware of this side-effect, Horizon Therapeutics went on fostering misleading information about the drug for years. As a result, more victims like her suffered and filed their lawsuits and are awaiting compensation that can cover the damages and discomfort they have endured.
The Side Effects of Tepezza
The negative side effects of Tepezza were noted at the time of two randomized, placebo-controlled, and double-masked clinical studies. A common side effect is muscle spasms, and almost 25% of patients have witnessed it. Close to 23% of menstruating women who used this medicine underwent menstrual disorders.
In case you witness side effects like hearing changes with diarrhea accompanied by bleeding, you need to consult a doctor. A few other side effects include:
- Dry Skin
- Weight loss
- Dysgeusia, which means a sudden change in taste
- Nail disorder
Most of the side effects were equal for both women and men and didn’t alter much for people who were below or above 65 years old. At the time of the treatment, the side effects might just disappear as the body gradually starts to regulate with medicine.
There are infusion-related reactions such as feeling hot or having breathing troubles in about 4% of patients. Close to 10% of patients who have impaired glucose tolerance report hyperglycemia and flare-ups.
How to Treat TED?
There are several ways in which TED can be treated. One of the best options is the OTC (over-the-counter) medicines to help reduce the symptoms. A doctor might suggest specific eye drops that can lubricate a gritty-feeling eye. Usually, it’s a saline-based solution that soothes an irritated eye.
Penn Medicine reports that a few patients felt better when they started using selenium supplements on their daily diet.
Another treatment option is surgical procedures, which are considered being a last resort because of the complications a patient has witnessed. Some surgeries include:
- Eyelid surgery
- Eye muscle surgery
- Decompression surgery
Finally, there are a few prescription medicines that are used for treating TED symptoms. Currently, the three prominent drugs that are used include:
- Neuromuscular blockers
- Monoclonal antibodies
The medical community thought that Tepezza would be a useful medicine to treat TED and provide relief to the patients. However, what took place was tinnitus and hearing loss followed by a series of side effects that no one wants to experience while treating TED.
The Legal Recourse
Once you face the side effects of Tepezza, you need to address them medically first. Hence, be patient and visit a doctor for them to provide the correct diagnosis that will enable you to lessen the discomfort and also treat your TED to the best capacity possible.
However, as you do that, you can get in touch with a lawyer who can help arrange your legal case better and assist you in this journey.
TorHoerman Law states that evidence plays a crucial role and that lawyers are always in search of relevant proof that will help to make a victim’s case strong. It can be anything from the medical prescription, medical reports, the duration of Tepezza use, and other healthcare data. Every piece of evidence will help lawyers establish a strong case that will ensure both justice and fair compensation for the victim.
To wrap up, Tepezza has been causing hearing loss for many people. Hence, patients should voice up their experiences through their lawsuits to help raise awareness about this drug. Doctors must look into this as well, or they will be suggesting this medicine to people without knowing the truth, which can cost their reputation and the patient’s health to a huge extent.
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