Levaquin Makers Johnson & Johnson Under Fire For Potential Kickbacks

February 2, 2010

Levaquin makers Johnson & Johnson under fire for potential kickbacks

Pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson is under investigation by the U.S. Justice Department amid allegations that the company paid millions in dollars in kickbacks to Omnicare, one of the largest pharmacies in the U.S. According to accusations, Johnson & Johnson paid Omnicare, which specializes in nursing home care, to use its influence over physicians to prescribe drugs like Risperdal and Levaquin in lieu of competitive drugs. Both drugs have experienced huge spikes in sales, as Levaquin, a drug used to treat tendon injuries and bacterial infections, overtook rival drug Cipro during a five-year period.

However, since 2008, the prescription anti-bacterial medication Levaquin has been at the center of lawsuits alleging that the drug has caused a variety of tendon injuries, including ruptures but also serious permanent damage. A class action was formed in Minnesota in 2008 for prescribed users who experienced severe tendon ruptures, and another was formed in New Jersey in July 2009 when users reported Achilles tendon ruptures while using Levaquin. Most recently, more than 1,200 claims were reported in Illinois, as prescribed users alleged that Johnson & Johnson had been downplaying the side effects and risks of the drug.

Manufacturers and distributors have denied that Levaquin and related drugs are responsible for such injuries, often reinforcing that the positive outcome of the drug far outweighs the risks. There were also a number of lawsuits filed after 2001, as Levaquin and related drugs were used to treat people exposed to Anthrax, as it treats damages caused by the inhalation of the toxic bacterial disease.

Also known as levofloxacin, Levaquin is in the fluoroquinolone drug class, which is a broad class of widely-used antibiotics. The oral medication can and has been prescribed for urinary tract infections, certain types of pneumonia, skin infections, chronic bacterial prostatis, post-exposure to Anthrax, sinusitis, and bronchitis, among other various bacterial infections.

If you or a loved one has experienced a serious side effect or symptoms of side effects related to Levaquin or related prescription medications, contact Newsome Law Firm and fill out a case evaluation form today. Our team of attorneys has experience specific to complications associated with prescription medications. Not only can they give you the legal guidance you need, they can help you get the compensation you deserve.

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