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Fosamax is a type of medication intended for healing osteoporosis and other conditions. Unfortunately, Fosamax creates conditions that result in the deterioration of bone. Manufactured by Merck, Fosamax, or alendronate, was introduced to the U.S. in 1995. In 2004, Fosamax and drugs like it were linked to a condition known as dead jaw, or osteonecrosis.
Symptoms of osteonecrosis include:
- Numbness or heaviness in the jaw
- Swelling and pain in the gums
- Slow healing of the gums
- Gum infections
- Loose teeth
In addition to dead jaw, Fosamax patients have experienced brittleness in the femur and other bones. The result is degenerative bone tissue and broken appendages. Fosamax patients have also complained of severe and even debilitating musculoskeletal pain and joint pain.
Fosamax is a bisphosphonate, which are drugs commonly used in tablet form to treat osteoporosis. Not all bisphosphate drugs have caused the same kinds of side effects as Fosamax. Bisphosphonate drugs are also given to cancer patients during chemotherapy and used in pain management.
Causes of Fosamax Weakening Bones
Fosamax is intended to promote bone growth, but the side effects are sometimes linked to Fosamax working too well. The bones are not allowed to grow slowly and become stable, which makes them more porous and brittle than they should be. This can affect older individuals who may suffer severe injuries from a broken bone or fall.
In 2006, the FDA asked Merck to provide a stronger warning label on their packaging. Merck did not comply with this request. Since then, there have been nearly 980 cases, including 1356 plaintiff groups, filed against Merck in federal and state court. The most recent case, May 5, 2010, was a federal jury finding for Merck against a plaintiff who claimed her jaw-related problems were the result of taking Fosamax.
If you believe you or a loved one has suffered serious side effects from taking Fosamax, please contact the experienced pharmaceutical litigation attorneys at Morelli Ratner PC for an initial consultation. We serve clients throughout New Jersey and New York, including Staten Island, New York City, Long Island.