Belviq Lawsuits 2024: Can Weight Loss Drugs Cause Cancer?

by | Mar 13, 2024 | Product Liability, Medications

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Each year, Americans spend millions of dollars on these unregulated weight-loss solutions, which might have harmful effects on their health and promise amazing results despite the lack of reliable research and regular safety checks.

In this blog, we’ll see what Lorcaserin (Belviq) is, the Belviq cancer warning and Belviq lawsuits, and their updates.

What is Belviq?

Belviq (lorcaserin) was a weight-loss drug that was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2012. How does Lorcaserin work? It works by influencing brain serotonin to help the user control their appetite. It was the first FDA-approved weight-loss medication since 1999.

Belviq (Lorcaserin) is used for the treatment of obesity. Belviq and Belviq XR were manufactured in Switzerland by San Diego-based Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc. Belviq was marketed and distributed in the United States by Eisai Inc. Both companies have been sued.

Belviq was only available with a lorcaserin prescription, and a person taking the drug was supposed to lose 5% of their body weight within the first 12 weeks when combined with a low-calorie diet. It was also given to obese people who had serious weight-related health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure.

Side effects of taking Belviq

The majority of Belviq side effects have been reported to be minor. These side effects may fade as the body adjusts to the medication. Patients should notify their healthcare providers if they do not go away or become bothersome.

While most lorcaserin side effects appear to be minor, the FDA issued a safety communication in January 2020 with Belviq warnings about the potential increase in cancer risk.

The cancers most frequently associated with Belviq use include:

  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Rectal cancer

Belviq should not be used by pregnant women because weight loss has no benefit for them. The drug may also be harmful to the fetus. There haven’t been enough studies to see if the drug causes birth defects.

Most of the people who filed Lorcaserin lawsuits took Belviq or Belviq XR within seven years of their cancer diagnosis. The Belviq lawsuits claim that Eisai Inc. and Arena Pharmaceuticals, the companies behind the well-known prescription weight-loss medicine Belviq, neglected to adequately inform consumers of the hazards and the potential for cancer following usage.

FDA Adverse Event Reporting System records 3,010 total cases, 437 serious cases, and 16 deaths between 2013 and December 31, 2020. The number of reports of adverse events peaked in 2014 at 1,165, then fell to 89 by 2020.

Do Belviq users who have cancer file lawsuits against Eisai?

In federal court in Missouri, a Lorcaserin Belviq lawsuit was brought against Eisai and Arena in September 2020. The complainant asserted that after using Belviq for two years, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. The woman claimed that Eisai and Arena misled consumers about the drug’s potential for cancer.

In her case against Belviq, the woman also claimed that they didn’t examine it thoroughly. Since then, numerous Belviq XR lawsuits have been submitted nationwide by people who used Belviq and were subsequently given a cancer diagnosis.

In August 2020, Mildred Smith filed her Belviq lawsuit. She was told she had rectal cancer in September 2018. As a result of that diagnosis, she experienced severe and irreversible bodily damage, pain and suffering, and, emotional distress.

In several cases, Eisai filed motions to dismiss in January and February 2021. These motions have generally failed thus far.

In March 2022, an elderly Californian woman named Claudia Hayes filed a Lorcaserin Belviq lawsuit against Eisai Incorporated, Arena Pharmaceuticals, and all other businesses involved in the development and manufacture of Belviq.

These cases are only the beginning. It is widely anticipated that more Belviq recall lawsuits will be brought in the months and years to come as past users are diagnosed and learn that their cancer was caused by Belviq prior to the recall. This is because Belviq’s sales peaked in the final few years when it remained on the market.

Why was Belviq discontinued and why is it dangerous?

The FDA approved Belviq in 2012 with the condition that drugmaker Eisai conducts clinical trials on the risk of cardiovascular problems associated with its weight-loss medication. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial involving 12,000 obese patients with various cardiovascular disease risk factors was conducted over a five-year period.

In 2018, the analysis that followed the trials was published. It found no significant difference in cardiovascular safety between groups that took Belviq and those that took the trial’s placebo. However, the study found a possible link between Belviq and cancer.

The FDA determined that the clinical trial participants continued to experience an increase in cancer diagnoses in the 18-month period following the release of the 2018 analysis, with 247 patients in the Belviq group (7.7%) and 213 patients in the placebo group (7.1%).

The FDA requested Eisai Inc. to voluntarily withdraw the drug due to the potential cancer link on February 13, 2020. The agency made its decision based on the findings of a five-year study of Belviq users conducted by the company to ensure there were no serious cardiovascular risks associated with the drug.

The agency then stated that the risk of cancer outweighed the drug’s weight loss benefits, and it requested that Eisai Inc., Belviq’s manufacturer, withdraw the drug from the U.S. market.

According to Belviq lawsuits, Arena and Eisai misrepresented Belviq as safe; that is why people are suing them. Defendants kept quiet about Belviq’s flaws rather than alerting the public to the elevated risk of cancer.

The main claims of the Belviq cancer lawsuits are:

  • Defective design: A medicine is created in accordance with the design specifications, but the design itself makes the drug hazardous or useless
  • Failure to alert: The drug’s manufacturer neglects to inform the public of the risks or to give adequate instructions about the use of the drug, thereby making it unsafe or dangerous
  • Manufacturing faults: A drug is safely designed, but has a defect in the manufacturing process, making it dangerous or unsafe.

Why was Belviq taken off the market?

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on February 13, 2020, that it had recommended the voluntary recall of Belviq and Belviq XR from the market. In a long-running clinical trial of the drugs, the FDA’s Drug Safety Communication warned of a rising incidence of cancer.

The FDA concluded that the risks of Belviq outweighed the benefits based on these studies. According to the statement, Eisai respected the FDA’s decision and was working with the agency to take Belviq off the market.

Weight loss drug Belviq was recalled when the FDA identified an increased risk of cancer. The Belviq lawsuits started soon after the FDA recalled the weight loss drug Belviq, compelling its manufacturer, Eisai Inc., to stop selling it. Belviq lawsuits were accepted by attorneys soon after the FDA declared that the medicine would no longer be sold after February 2020.

The drugs Belviq and Belviq XR are made by Eisai Inc. The business is headquartered in Japan, although its American headquarters are in New Jersey. It generates more than $600 million in annual income. The company that created Belviq should be held liable for failing to inform consumers of the drug’s known negative effects and possible cancer risk despite making millions of dollars in marketing the weight loss medication.

Is a class action lawsuit being filed against Belviq?

Belviq class action lawsuits have been filed against Eisai Inc. and Arena Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturers of Belviq and Belviq XR (lorcaserin), alleging that these weight loss medications raise the risk of cancer in users.

Belviq lawyers requested an MDL class action Belviq cancer lawsuit for claims made in New York, Louisiana, and New Jersey. The plan was to combine all federal court Belviq product liability litigation from all 50 states into Florida, New York, or New Jersey. However, the MDL panel rejected the motion.

For patients who bought Belviq, the case against Eisai and Arena is requesting class-action status. For those who used Belviq, this is a mixed blessing. It may be quickest to proceed with individual Belviq product liability cases in order to reach a fair settlement sum or a trial on these claims.

According to a motion submitted on April 12, 2021, the plaintiffs’ attorneys have requested that the U.S. Belviq lorcaserin weight loss drug cancer lawsuits are being consolidated from all over the nation into multidistrict litigation in the Eastern District of Louisiana due to the increasing number of Belviq lawsuits.

It is anticipated that hundreds, if not thousands, of people who took and consumed Belviq, developed cancer. According to court documents, many of these harmed individuals have already sued the defendants or will do so shortly.

In 2023, many Belviq lawsuits are settled. For a settlement, negotiations between Eisai and the claimants are still going on.

What should you do immediately for your Belviq lawsuit?

If you have been diagnosed with cancer, it’s crucial that you:

  • Get all the medical treatments you require.
  • Observe your bills and other expenditures.
  • Do as your doctor instruct and suggest.

Waiting to seek the care you require will damage your case. You must provide evidence of how you got cancer as a result of Belviq, a weight loss drug. Medical data will support your emotional injuries and demonstrate your economic losses. If you need weight loss lorcaserin medication, you can ask your doctor about Belviq replacement.

Who is eligible for Belviq lawsuits?

People who developed lung, pancreatic, or colorectal cancer after taking Belviq for six months may be able to sue. It is not required to be six months in a row. They should have started taking Belviq seven years after being diagnosed with cancer and are eligible to file Belviq pancreatic cancer lawsuits and receive compensation.

If you had previously been diagnosed with pancreatic, colorectal, or lung cancer before taking Belviq or Belviq XR, your attorney will want to know, as this could increase your risk of getting these malignancies once more. Within one and a half years following the death of a loved one who contracted cancer after using Belviq, the person should speak with an attorney.

Contact a knowledgeable Belviq lawsuit lawyer as soon as possible to find out more about whether you could have Belviq lawsuits and what kind of compensation is available to you.

Procedures for obtaining compensation in Belviq lawsuits

In the event that you have Belviq complaints, you can ask for damage reimbursement. Damages are losses brought on by a faulty or unsafe product. Your losses could consist of:

  • Medical records
  • lost income as a result of missed work
  • Decreased earnings due to your illness
  • Punitive damages
  • Medical bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress

A skilled Belviq lawsuit attorney can assist you in pursuing a Belviq settlement for your suffering. Sadly, far too many young people die of cancer. You might have a case if a person passed away from cancer while taking Belviq. A wrongful death lawsuit might be assisted by a Belviq cancer lawyer.

To conclude, there is no safety record for weight-loss medications. Belviq continues to have a bad track record. It’s difficult and unpleasant to deal with the side effects of using terrible medications. However, the federal government might be able to provide some reimbursement for these types of medications.

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