Think Twice Before Using Tepezza:
Hearing Loss Can Be Permanent
We perceive the world through our sense organs, and hearing plays a crucial role. When our hearing capacity is affected due to an internal issue or as an after-effect of any medicine, it impacts our lifestyle.
Horizon Therapeutics USA Inc., an Ireland-based drugmaker, is facing lawsuits from patients for their drug Tepezza. They have complained of tinnitus or permanent hearing loss after using this drug.
Tepezza, also called teprotumumab-trbw, is the very first prescription drug that the FDA approved for treating TED (thyroid eye disease). Being an auto-immune condition, TED results in red and swollen eyes, bulging of the eyes, and double vision.
One of the first lawsuits against Horizon Therapeutics was filed in August 2022 by Daniel Weibel. He said that the drugmaker might have been aware that Tepezza results in hearing loss and tinnitus. Despite several scientific studies and patient reports that linked this drug with tinnitus and hearing loss, the drug maker didn’t want patients or doctors to know about these health risks.
In this article, we will delve into the link between Tepezza and hearing loss and also share how patients can seek a legal remedy.
Studies Linking Tepezza-Induced Hearing Loss and Tinnitus
Horizon Therapeutics issued a press release in February 2022 to address side effects linked with Tepezza. The release stated that after a 19-month analysis of thousands of patients, close to 10% of every case led to some hearing issues. The pharmaceutical brand gave the impression that hearing loss in patients was usually reversible and mild.
However, another study that was published in the ‘American Journal of Ophthalmology’ in February 2022 revealed that hearing issues were as high as 81.5%. Additionally, in another study, 22 out of 27 patients experienced new hearing issues. And a few of them faced hearing loss issues even when they stopped using the drug.
Going forward, in April 2022, BMJ Case Reports shared that a woman had developed tinnitus right after she took her third dose. When she was on the fifth dose, she faced hearing loss. It made doctors halt her treatment, and even after six weeks, her symptoms were the same.
Recently, in July 2023, the FDA had to update the Tepezza drug label with a warning. It alerted doctors and patients that the medicine might lead to hearing issues, which include permanent hearing loss. This suggests that patients who have filed a Tepezza lawsuit are correct to state that this drug causes hearing problems.
Aside from this, a few other side effects of Tepezza include:
- Spasms or cramps
- Hair Loss
- High blood sugar
- Dry skin
- Nail disorders
- Weight loss
If you have been put on this drug by your doctor and notice anyone or many of these symptoms, it is necessary to point them out. It will help your doctor minimize your dose or stop the medicine completely based on your condition.
Navigating the Legal Path
The lawsuits filed to date claim that Tepezza leads to hearing loss because it blocks IGF-1R, which is a protein that can affect hair cells accountable for balance and hearing. The hair cells present in the inner ear are effective in detecting sound waves and transmitting them to our brain. Hence, the damaged cells can result in hearing loss and various other auditory problems.
Tepezza infusions were initially considered a niche treatment modality in a rather limited market. However, during the second year, the sales had doubled to $1.66 billion in the U.S. market. Some critics said that the medicine was being marketed aggressively by covering all its potential risks.
As a result of which several former users today are reporting the issues that they have faced after using this drug. TorHoerman Law states that if you too have faced a similar predicament, it is necessary to keep your medical records handy and file a lawsuit. But before that, it is necessary to get in touch with a lawyer and take his guidance for the same.
A lawyer provides you with the necessary guidelines for going through the legal procedures and sharing accurate evidence with them. They create a strong case after evaluating your scenario to ensure that you get fair compensation to cover all the economic and non-economic damages.
To sum up, no one wants to develop a debilitating health condition as an after-effect of treating an existing ailment. Hence, it is safe to assume that TED patients weren’t aware of the side effects of Tepezza when they started using it, as the pharmaceutical company wasn’t vocal about it.
While patients today have some awareness, others have already suffered from drug use. Once the symptoms are known and medically diagnosed, they need to seek legal assistance.