Cipro, generically known as ciprofloxacin, is a popular antibiotic belonging to the same classification (fluoroquinolone) as drugs like Levaquin and Avelox. It’s been on the market for almost 30 years and is commonly used to treat bacterial infections including respiratory tract infections, UTIs, skin infections, and more. It’s also commonly used to treat patients who have been exposed to anthrax.
During the Gulf War, deployed U.S. Marines were ordered to take Cipro in order to prevent anthrax. The other military divisions weren’t given the same order. It was later revealed that the Marine Corps division may have been working in conjunction with the manufacturers of Cipro (Bayer) to test how well the drug worked to protect users from anthrax.
The drug was thought to be perfectly safe at the time. Most doctors and health professionals back then didn’t associate Cipro with any negative side effects. It wasn’t until after the Gulf War that Bayer started taking precautions to place warning labels on the drug, in fact.
Now, years later, it’s well-documented that fluoroquinolones like Cipro can actually be quite dangerous. Serious side effects of Cipro include peripheral neuropathy and other types of nerve damage as well as tendon injuries including tendon ruptures. Minor side effects include muscle weakness, tremors, joint stiffness, and confusion/lightheadedness. Oftentimes, patients will experience multiple symptoms. Patients suffering from multiple symptoms are often referred to as having a condition known as Fluoroquinolones Toxicity Syndrome.
Fluoroquinolones Toxicity Syndrome includes damage caused to tendons and ligaments as well as damage to the nervous system. This damage is usually irreversible, causing victims to experience chronic pain and other complications that can seriously impact their ability to live a healthy, normal lifestyle. There are hundreds of victims suffering from Fluoroquinolones Toxicity Syndrome and its related symptoms. There are even support groups for survivors.
All fluoroquinolones, including Cipro, are under heavy fire in the legal world. Over 400 Levaquin lawsuits have been consolidated and are headed to trial this year. Our own Tad Thomas is assisting in these cases as part of the Plaintiff’s Steering Committee. Despite the hundreds of lawsuits and evidence of victims who are experiencing lifelong complications as a result of taking Cipro, the drug continues to be widely used and available on the market today.
There has also been recent evidence indicating that the Gulf War veterans who took Cipro may be experiencing lifelong health complications due to the drug. Beginning in 1998, the VA started seeing numerous cases of an unexplained illness that only Gulf War veterans seemed to be reporting. The VA coined the illness “Gulf War Illness”. It’s indicated by chronic, unexplained symptoms including fatigue, joint stiffness, muscle pain, joint pain, difficulty concentrating, and severe numbness. The symptoms of Gulf War Illness tend to last for 6 months or more and can lead to permanent nerve or joint injuries.
The symptoms of Gulf War Illness seem extremely similar to those of Fluoroquinolones Toxicity Syndrome, especially those related to nerve and joint damage. Given the connection, it’s very possible the two are the same—and both are caused by Cipro.
If you or someone you love has been affected by debilitating symptoms which may be related to Fluoroquinolones Toxicity Syndrome, Gulf War Illness, or any of the symptoms commonly associated with taking Cipro or another fluoroquinolone antibiotic, you and your family don’t have to suffer alone. There are legal options available. Taking legal action might be the only way to make sure Bayer finally realizes just how dangerous Cipro and its generic variants are.
A simple antibiotic shouldn’t cause chronic pain and lifelong complications—not when there are plenty of safer options on the market. Louisville, KY dangerous drug lawyer Tad Thomas of Thomas Law Offices and his team of expert personal injury attorneys are up to the task of fighting against major pharmaceutical corporations to ensure safer drugs are a priority instead of profit. Contact our Louisville office for a free case consultation.