Lipitor is the brand name for atorvastatin calcium, a cholesterol-lowering medication that is part of the drug class known as statins. Lipitor is marketed in the United States by Pfizer, and the drug is one of the all-time best-selling prescription drugs in the world. Since its approval in 1996, Lipitor has generated more than $130 billion in sales.
However, multiple studies have noted a link between the use of statins, including Lipitor, and side effects such as Type 2 diabetes, which causes patients to develop high blood-sugar levels.
Research conducted in Canada in 2013 demonstrated that patients taking Lipitor had a 22% increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes when compared to patients taking Pravachol, another cholesterol lowering medication. This research followed a 2011 study that was based on data from three large clinical trials of 4,000 patients which suggested that patients on a high dose of Lipitor may have an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
In February 2012, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that patients using Lipitor and other statins may have an increased risk of the side effects of developing elevated blood sugar levels and Type 2 diabetes. The FDA ordered Pfizer to place additional warnings in the Lipitor’s prescription label about the risk of developing diabetes. The FDA also stated that doctors prescribing Lipitor to their patients should monitor the blood sugar levels after the patients begin using Lipitor and other statin medications.
Lipitor Litigation & Trial Update
In February 2014, all Lipitor diabetes lawsuits filed in federal court were centralized in In Re: Lipitor (Atorvastatin Calcium) Marketing, Sales Practices and Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2502 established in the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina before the Honorable Richard Gergel. Fewer than two dozen cases were initially transferred to the Lipitor MDL when it was created. However, as of April 2015, there were over 2,185 Lipitor lawsuits pending in the MDL. A recent order issued by Judge Gergel in the MDL in March 2015 has scheduled jury selection for the first bellwether trial to begin on November 4, 2015.
If you or a loved one used Lipitor and developed Type 2 diabetes, you may be entitled to pursue a claim against the manufacturers for damages. For a free and confidential case evaluation, please call our office toll-free at (888) 747-5342 or complete our online contact form and we will promptly respond to your inquiry.