The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently requested a voluntary recall of the weight loss medications Belviq and Belviq XR (lorcaserin) after a clinical trial revealed an increased occurrence of several types of cancer in patients taking the medication. Belviq was approved by the FDA in 2012, as a drug to combat weight gain among adults who were obese or had at least one comorbidity related to their weight. As a condition of approval, however, it was required that the manufacturer, Eisai, Inc., conduct a clinical trial to determine whether there was any cardiovascular risk associated with taking the medication.
Upon reviewing the safety data from the clinical trial, the FDA determined that more patients taking the medication were diagnosed with cancer compared to patients taking a placebo. It was discovered that one additional cancer occurred per 470 patients taking the medication for a period of one year. The types of cancer that occurred more frequently in patients taking Belviq included pancreatic, colorectal, and lung cancer. Following the FDA’s discovery and recall request, the manufacturer voluntarily withdrew the drug from the market.
According to the FDA recall notice, patients taking Belviq (lorcaserin) should stop taking the medication and talk to their physicians about alternatives. All unused medication should be properly disposed. Likewise, physicians who prescribed this medication should stop prescribing it, inform their patients of the increased occurrence of cancer discovered in the clinical trial, and encourage their patients to stop taking the medication.
Suthers & Harper is currently investigating potential cases involving pancreatic, colorectal, and lung cancer related to Belviq use. Our attorneys are experienced in litigating cases involving recalled and defective drugs for patients who have suffered serious, adverse effects and illnesses caused by such medications.
If you or a loved one have suffered from pancreatic, colorectal, or lung cancer after taking Belviq, contact the defective product attorneys at Suthers & Harper, or call us toll free at 1-800-320-2384 for a free consultation.