Celgene Accused of Illegally Marketing Dangerous Cancer Treatments
Celgene is facing a lawsuit alleging that the company illegally marketed their cancer drugs Thalomid and Revlimid, and downplayed the potentially deadly side effects associated with the drugs.
Celgene Illegally Markets Dangerous Cancer Drugs
According to Bloomberg News, a former sales woman with Celgene is claiming that the Summit-based pharmaceutical company attempted to market the two highly toxic medications for indications not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Currently, both Thalomid and Revlimid are approved for the treatment of multiple myeloma, but serious side effects and high fatality rates resulted in both drugs to being labeled as second-line treatments.
According to former-sales woman Beverly Brown, Clegene knowingly marketed the drugs for uses beyond those recognized by the FDA, all while attempting to downplay the life-threatening side effects that have been linked to the drug.
Due to this off-label marketing, Brown claims that “patients and their advisors were denied appropriate warnings provided in a package insert when a product is used on-label’” and is alleging that Celgene has violated the False Claims Act.
Serious Side Effects Linked to Thalomid and Revlimid
- In July, Celgene was forced to terminate a clinical trial testing their drug Revlimid against a competing therapy after a number of patient deaths.
- Reuters states that during a clinical trial for expanded use of the myeloma drug, 34 of the 210 patients receiving Revlimid died while only 18 deaths were recorded among the 211 patients being treated with chlorambucil.
- Thalomid has also been linked to serious adverse events including blood clots, renal failure, cardiac failure, cardiac disorder and death.