Johnson & Johnson is facing another round of lawsuits by users of its antibiotic Levaquin. Levaquin, a powerful antibiotic, was once the highest selling antibiotic in the country. However, more evidence has mounted that the drug causes nerve damage that can be permanent, even with short-term use.
The company faced thousands of lawsuits after the FDA issued its first 2009 warning that use of the drug can cause tendon ruptures and tendonitis. This risk was said to be higher for those over 60 and people also taking steroids. J&J won some and lost some of those early cases, at times the jury sided with the patients, at times they thought the warnings put on the labels were adequate.
The drug is manufactured by J&J’s subsidiary, Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals. The company has always maintained that it properly disclosed the risks associated with the drug, which has been prescribed to millions of patients.