What is Fen-Phen?
Fen-Phen is an abbreviation of the combination of two different drugs. Fenfluramine, more commonly known as Pondimin. Phentermine is more commonly referred to as its brand name Ionamin. Fen-Phen was approved for use by the FDA in 1973 (Fen) and 1959 (Phen). Fen-Phen remained on the market until 1997 when it was linked to heart valve disease and pulmonary hypertension.
Both drugs act to control the serotonin levels in the brain, as certain levels of serotonin in the brains act to repress feelings of hunger. Given that each drug has the ability to affect serotonin levels in the brain, either separately or together, each drug has the capability of being neuro-toxic. When acting together, these drugs are used to help people who want to lose weight.
Sadly there is evidence mounting that states fen or phen, taken alone or with each other, maybe responsible for primary pulmonary hypertension, heart valve problems, and neurotoxicity of the brain.
Primary Pulmonary Hypertension (PPH) is a deadly lung disorder than can lead to heart failure. Recently, doctors have stated they believe PPH is on the rise due to use of certain diet drugs during the 1990’s, and many of these drugs have been tied to development of PPH. PPH progressively narrows the blood vessels of the lungs. Studies that focused on appetite suppressant drugs have said that use of Fen-Phen increases an individual’s risk of developing PPH by nearly 25%-30%.
There have been hundreds of lawsuits settled or litigated against the American Home Products Corporation, the makes of Fen-Phen, with millions of dollars being paid out to numerous victims. The company has paid out millions of dollars for those who have gotten PPH following use of Fen-Phen, Pondimin, or a similarly marketed drug such as Redux.
Side Effects of Fen-Phen
Some very serious and potentially life threatening side effects have been tied to use of Fen-Phen, they include;
- Primary Pulmonary Hypertension (PPH)
- Cardiac Fibrosis
When Fen-Phen was pulled from the United States market cases against the manufacturer flooded the courts. These lawsuits allege, among other complaints, that the company failed to warn users of health risks the company should have been aware of. Doctors and weight-loss centers are also being drawn into lawsuits associated with Fen-Phen use under the allegations of medical malpractice.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury due to use of Fen-Phen, you may be entitled to compensation. Potential recovery includes past and future medical expenses, past and future pain and suffering, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity and emotional distress.
At Sheff Law, we are the Massachusetts law firm with the resources, experience, and national reputation to investigate injuries resulting from use of Fen-Phen. Patients across Massachusetts and America have realized some of the potential harmful consequences of using Fen-Phen for weight loss purposes. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of Fen-Phen, contact an attorney at Sheff Law today by filling out a FREE consultation form, or call at (888) 423-4477 or 617-227-7000.
February 23rd, 2016 | Posted in Blog