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Amiodarone Injuries and Lawsuit

Have you or a loved one suffered severe side effects, such as lung damage, Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TEN) or blindness due to taking Amiodarone? If this is true, the smart thing to do is to call a personal injury attorney for your case to be considered at no cost or obligation to you. You may have compensation due you for your Amiodarone injury.

What is Amiodarone?

Amiodarone is a member of a group of drugs that are known as antiarrhythmics. An antiarrhythmic drug is one that suppresses cardiac arrhythmias (abnormal rhythms of your heart), such as atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter, ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation.

There have been several attempts made to classify antiarrhythmic drugs. The problem arises from the fact that many antiarrhythmic drugs have multiple modes of action, which make any classification imprecise.

Amiodarone was initially discovered and developed in 1961. It was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on January 5, 1999. Amiodarone is sold under the brand names of Cordarone, Pacerone or Nexterone.

What is Amiodarone used for?

Amiodarone is used in life-threatening situations. It is used to help keep a person's heart beating normally in people who have life-threatening heart rhythm disorders of the ventricles. The ventricles are the lower chambers of your heart that permit blood to flow out of your heart.

One of the problems with Amiodarone is that doctors have been prescribing the drug for what is referred to as off-label use without warning their patients about the potential life-threatening side effects that it may cause. Off-label use is when a drug is prescribed by a doctor for a purpose that has not been approved by the FDA.

While off-label use as prescribed by a doctor is legal, it can upset the balance that exists between the drug's benefit and risk. This is of vital importance in having a drug approved by the FDA and placed for sale on the market in the United States.

Common Side Effects of Amiodarone

Another problem with Amiodarone is that the drug has relatively common side effects. Some of these side effects are serious and life-threatening. They include:

  • Lung - The most serious side effect may be interstitial lung disease. This disease causes progressive scarring of your lung tissue that eventually affects your ability to breathe and get enough oxygen into your bloodstream.
  • Thyroid - The drug can bring about induced abnormalities in your thyroid function.
  • Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TEN) - This is a skin condition in which large portions of your epidermis, your skin's outermost layer, disengages from the inner layers of your skin.
  • Blindness may occur.
  • Gastrointestinal and liver problems, such as jaundice, liver enlargement (hepatomegaly) or hepatitis may occur.
  • Peripheral neuropathies have resulted from long-term use of Amiodarone.
  • Gynecomastia (enlargement of breast tissue in men) may take place.
  • There may be an increased risk of cancer, especially in men with a dose-dependent effect.