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Judge Allows Valsartan Lawsuits to Proceed

The judge overseeing the multidistrict litigation (MDL) for the blood pressure drug valsartan will not exclude plaintiffs’ expert testimony. This ruling is good news for those with cases against valsartan manufacturers because it leaves evidence intact to support their claims. Recently, a judge dismissed federal Zantac lawsuits for lack of evidence that the heartburn drug causes cancer. Valsartan manufacturers hoped to throw out lawsuits similarly by questioning plaintiff evidence. Yet, the judge refused to reconsider his stance on the validity of the plaintiffs’ expert testimony. 

If you took medication that contained valsartan and later developed cancer, our lawyers want to assist you in filing a valsartan lawsuit. Individuals diagnosed with cancer claim valsartan drugs tainted with carcinogenic chemicals resulted in the life-threatening disease. 

Valsartan Contaminated With Carcinogenic NDMA

Valsartan is an active ingredient in popular brand-name and generic blood pressure and heart medications. This component treats high blood pressure and heart failure by blocking a substance in the body that tightens blood vessels. Several drugs contain valsartan, with millions of Americans taking some form of medication with valsartan. 

In 2018, the FDA announced the recall of several medicines with valsartan over cancer-causing impurities. The recalled products contained N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), a probable human carcinogen. Patients exposed to NDMA may develop cancers, such as stomach, bladder, and liver cancer. A change in the manufacturing process may have introduced the cancer-causing agent. This recall only affected certain batches of medications with valsartan, specifically those supplied from a manufacturing plant in China. Numerous pharmaceutical companies received their valsartan from this plant.  

It is unknown how long valsartan-based medications with NDMA were on the market. However, reports indicate the changes made at the plant could have introduced NDMA into valsartan products as early as 2012. Therefore, millions of Americans may have taken contaminated valsartan medications daily for approximately six years. 

Valsartan Drug Makers Attempt to Discard Expert Opinions

Over 1,100 valsartan cancer lawsuits are part of multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the District of New Jersey. Plaintiffs allege that NDMA-tainted valsartan caused them to develop various forms of cancer. Earlier this year, drugmakers in the MDL requested the federal judge to exclude expert witnesses. These witnesses are key for plaintiffs to demonstrate the link between valsartan and cancer. The judge denied the defendants’ motion on the grounds that expert opinions were scientifically sound. 

However, valsartan drugmakers did not stop at this first rejection. Due to the recent exclusion of expert witnesses in federal Zantac lawsuits and the subsequent dismissal of Zantac claims, defendants tried again to sway the judge presiding over the valsartan MDL. On December 20, 2022, drugmakers asked the judge to reconsider their motion to omit the plaintiffs’ expert opinions. 

In this request, the defendants asserted that the cancer causation theories in the Zantac and valsartan lawsuits are similar. Since the court found evidence in Zantac cancer claims to be unreliable, Judge Kugler should reconsider removing valsartan cancer claims.  

Judge Preserves Evidence in Federal Valsartan Lawsuits

Judge Kugler quickly shut down drugmakers’ renewed attempt to discount evidence that valsartan contained NDMA. Only two days after the defendants filed their motion, Judge Kugler issued his response. Judge Kugler stated that, unlike Zantac, there is no scientific doubt regarding the presence of NDMA in valsartan-containing drugs. This order has safeguarded federal valsartan lawsuits. Now, we await the court to select bellwether trials, which will help us to understand how a jury views valsartan cancer claims. 

The Lake Law Firm Can Assist You in a Valsartan Lawsuit

If you took recalled valsartan drugs, you could be entitled to compensation through a valsartan lawsuit. Lawyers have helped individuals file claims alleging contaminated batches of valsartan caused severe health problems, such as cancer. Reach out today to speak with one of our lawyers to see if you qualify. 

The Lake Law Firm was founded by Edward J. Lake, Esq., a personal injury lawyer for over 25 years. Our dedicated team of attorneys is committed to seeking justice on behalf of those who have suffered injury or death due to the negligence of others. Our experienced attorneys handle many different types of pharmaceutical drugs, medical devices, and other defective products. The lawyers in our firm have helped collect millions of dollars for their clients. The Lake Law Firm will advocate for you and your rights. Please contact us for a free confidential case evaluation at (888) 274-0139.