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TDF Based Drugs

A TDF Based Drug lawsuit is a mass tort claim against the pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences, Inc. for the side effects of Truvada, a pill that helps to treat and prevent HIV and AIDS. Truvada has been linked to serious side effects such as kidney damage and failure, as well as osteoporosis, a decrease in bone density, and broken bones. The lawsuits claim that, not only did Gilead fail to warn patients about these risks by not disclosing them, but they even withheld a safer drug for a decade in order to maximize their profits.

What is Truvada?

Truvada is a drug that was designed to treat and prevent human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, and acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or AIDS. As a combination of the chemicals emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF), Truvada keeps HIV cells from multiplying once in the body.

Importantly, this means that Truvada does not cure HIV or AIDS. Instead, it merely contains HIV and keeps it from developing into AIDS. This stops short of actually eliminating HIV from a patient’s system.

Truvada, however, can also be used as a prophylactic drug to prevent HIV contraction. Many people who do not have HIV or AIDS, like those in an intimate relationship with someone who is HIV-positive, can take Truvada to reduce the risk of becoming infected.

One of the drugs in Truvada, TDF, has been around since the 1980s. However, its use for HIV had been limited because it could only be taken intravenously. When Inc. bought the rights to sell TDF, though, they modified it so it could be taken orally, in the form of a pill. That oral medication was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)in 2001 under the brand name Viread.

Since approval, TDF has been sold under a handful of other names, including:

  • Truvada
  • Complera
  • Atripla
  • Symfi-Lo
  • Cimduo
  • Genvoya
  • Stribild

Some of these medications combine TDF with other HIV/AIDS drugs. For example, Truvada combines TDF with emtricitabine, a chemical that reduces the ability of HIV RNA cells to turn into HIV DNA, preventing them from becoming viral. Truvada was approved by the FDA in 2004.2

The health risks associated with Truvada

Decreased bone density and osteoporosis

One of the serious side effects of Truvada is a decrease in bone density. This can lead to the medical condition osteoporosis. These problems are caused by the high dosage levels of Truvada, the toxicity of which slowly deteriorates a patient’s bone structure.

Because Truvada is not a cure for HIV or AIDS, but is rather a treatment for the conditions, it is intended to be taken for prolonged periods of time. This long-term exposure to Truvada and the drug TDF takes a significant toll on a patient’s bone density, drastically increasing the risks for:

  • Bone fractures
  • Broken bones
  • Osteopenia
  • Osteoporosis

Kidney damage and renal failure

Because Truvada was designed to be taken in such high doses for such a long time, and because it is up to the kidneys to expel the drugs from a patient’s system, Truvada also puts a lot of stress on the kidneys, as well. This strain can lead to kidney damage and even kidney failure, which can create numerous other medical problems, including lactic acidosis.

Lawsuits over Truvada’s side effects

Numerous personal injury and TDF HIV Drug lawsuits have been filed against Gilead Sciences, Inc. for their failure to warn patients about the serious side effects of the drug, including a class action lawsuit representing victims in the state of California. These lawsuits also include allegations that Gilead Sciences, Inc. had developed a drug that was safer than Truvada, but kept it out of production until Truvada’s patent was set to expire.

Compensation available for victims of Truvada

Victims of Truvada are likely to have suffered very serious injuries and amassed steep medical bills and other losses. Filing a defective drug lawsuit against Gilead can recover the compensation that victims deserve for the losses, pain, and suffering that they have sustained through no fault of their own.

These compensatory damages can come in a variety of forms, including:

  • The costs of medical expenses incurred, and that are likely to be incurred in the future, for the medical conditions caused by Truvada,
  • Professional repercussions, like lost wages and a reduced earning capacity, caused by those medical conditions,
  • Physical pain and mental suffering and anguish, and
  • The loss of consortium suffered by a victim’s family
  • Additionally, lawsuits pending against Gilead for the effects of Truvada have sought punitive damages.These damages seek to punish the makers of defectively advertised drugs for their egregious and dangerous conduct.

What you can do if you have been hurt

If you have been taking Truvada and suspect that you have suffered one of the serious side effects related to it, you should consult a doctor, first. Bone density and kidney tests can detect problems before they become so severe that they can impact or even endanger your life.

If those tests find that you are suffering from the adverse effects of Truvada, you may want to consider talking with a lawyer. Drug companies like Gilead have a legal duty to warn people about the dangers associated with their drugs. When they decide not to, innocent people can get hurt through no fault of their own. Holding those companies accountable for their actions often involves making them pay compensation to the victims. 

Contact our product liability team

The product liability team at the 1-800LAW-FIRM represent people who have been hurt by a drug company’s wrongdoing. It is important to act quickly, as there is a statute of limitation (deadline) for filing a Truvada lawsuit or claim. Call us at 1-800-LAWFIRM to schedule a consultation that can start your claim for compensation.