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Prescription weight-loss drugs are marketed as solutions to managing your weight. They’re not supposed to create entirely new problems. However, the weight-loss drugs, Belviq, Belviq XR, and its generic counterpart Lorcaserin, were pulled from the market in February 2020 following the results of a study that found a correlation between taking Belviq and increased risk of cancer.
If you or a loved one has taken Belviq and were later diagnosed with cancer, you may have grounds to file a Belviq lawsuit and recover substantial damages.
About Belviq and Cancer
Like many other weight-loss drugs, Belviq, Belviq XR, and their generic counterpart, Lorcaserin, are positioned as solutions for people struggling with obesity.
Belviq was approved by the FDA in 2012 for obesity and individuals with weight-related health conditions, such as high blood pressure and diabetes. As part of the approval process, the FDA required the manufacturer of the Belviq drugs, Eisai Inc., to complete clinical trials to determine the safety and efficacy of the drug, particularly in regards to concerns about potential cardiovascular risks among Belviq users.
This study tracked 12,000 patients over the course of five years. Researchers found that participants who took Lorcaserin were more frequently diagnosed with cancer compared to those who received a placebo; 7.7 percent of patients taking Belviq were diagnosed with cancer, compared to the 7.1 percent of patients taking the placebo.
The occurrence of cancer was found to increase the longer a patient took Belviq. The types of cancer found among patients at an increased rate included colorectal, pancreatic, and lung.
On February 13, 2020, the FDA issued a safety communication requesting the recall of the prescription weight loss drug Belviq. The recall is based on a clinical study that showed an increase in the occurrence of certain cancers among Belviq users. These results compelled the FDA to alert the public of the possible increased risk of cancer associated with Belviq in January 2020.
However, at that time the agency did not recommend removing the drug from the market; but less than a month later, the FDA concluded that the potential risk of cancer outweighs the benefits of the drug and recommended the manufacturer recall Belviq from the U.S. Market.
Does does Belviq cause cancer? The FDA has yet to determine if Lorcaserin actually causes cancer or creates an elevated risk. In February 2020, the FDA reported that they had asked Eisai to voluntarily remove the drug from U.S. markets. The agency is now advising all patients to stop taking Belviq and all healthcare providers to stop prescribing it due to the Belviq cancer risk.
At the same time, healthcare professionals were advised to stop prescribing Belviq products or Lorcaserin to patients and talk to them about the increased cancer rates found in the clinical trial.
Our Belviq lawyers are ready to help
Each Stark & Stark Belviq attorney is actively pursuing Belviq drug lawsuits and settlements against the manufacturer on behalf of patients. If you have a Belviq drug claim or have any questions about a cancer diagnosis that you may have received because of Belviq drug use, our drug claims Belviq attorneys at Stark & Stark can help.
About Stark & Stark
Stark & Stark is a national law firm pursuing thousands of cases throughout the country. We have been in business for over 80 years and have over 100 attorneys in offices located throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York.
Our Belviq lawyers are experienced in mass torts litigation cases and in negotiating with pharmaceutical settlement representatives. Let us help you get the resolution you deserve.
FAQs About Belviq Lawsuits and Settlements
What is Belviq? How does it work?
Belviq is a popular weight loss drug for those struggling with obesity and other weight-related health concerns. The drug is manufactured by Eisai, Inc and was approved for use in U.S. markets by the FDA in 2012.
Belviq uses the brain’s neurotransmitters responsible for controlling appetite and satiety to help patients lose weight. It is recommended as part of an overall weight management routine to include diet and exercise. Belviq can help address issues like diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol as a result of weight management, but it doesn’t directly treat them.
Were there other studies that showed an increased risk of cancer associated with Belviq?
Preliminary studies suggested a correlation between Belviq use and cancer. Before the drug was approved, manufacturer testing linked Belviq to a higher rate of cancerous tumors. The FDA expressed concern with this data, but the risks were not considered significant enough to prevent Belviq from being placed on the market at the time.
What’s the difference between Belviq and Belviq XR?
Belviq comes in two different forms, Belviq and Belviq XR. Belviq is a 10mg tablet of Lorcaserin that is typically prescribed to be taken twice a day. Belviq XR is the extended-release format that is taken once a day.
What are the risks of taking Belviq, Belviq XR, or Lorcaserin?
Weight loss drugs can pose serious health and safety risks for those taking them. In the five-year study of 12,000 patients, those that took Belviq were more likely to get cancer than those who took a placebo. Several types of cancer occurred most frequently: pancreatic, colorectal, and lung cancer.
I’ve been taking Belviq. Should I stop taking it?
The FDA has recommended that those taking Belviq discontinue the medication immediately. However, they may experience withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, constipation, headaches, and dizziness. If you’re currently taking Belviq, you should speak to a healthcare professional about your options.
Has Belviq been recalled by the FDA?
In February of 2020, the FDA called for Eisai to pull all Belviq and Belviq XR products from the market. Eisai has complied with the request.
I’ve been experiencing side effects while taking Belviq. What should I do?
As with any medical situation, you should speak with a healthcare professional about unexpected side effects. You should also report side effects from Belviq to the FDA. It’s also advisable to speak with a personal injury attorney to discuss your legal options.
I was diagnosed with cancer after taking Belviq. Am I eligible for a lawsuit?
If you were taking Belviq, Belviq XR, or another brand of Lorcaserin and then were diagnosed with cancer, you may be eligible for a lawsuit against the drug manufacturer, Eisai.
If a loved one took these drugs and was diagnosed with cancer, you may also pursue legal action on their behalf.
Where do I start?
These cases are time-sensitive, so it’s best to seek prompt medical treatment and legal advice. To learn more about your legal options, contact the experienced Belviq lawsuit lawyers at Stark and Stark.