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HIV Medication Viread Side Effects Lawsuit in 2024 (Latest Updates)

Recently filed lawsuits charge the drug maker Gilead Sciences pharmaceutical company, manufacturer of a class of HIV medications that includes Viread, with bringing a defective drug to market, and of unnecessarily exposing the public to a risk of serious side effects when there are a variety of safer drug products available.
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

Free Confidential Viread Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has been harmed by the side effects of a tenofovir alafenamide fumarate TAF medication, you should contact our law firm immediately for a free consultation. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a dangerous drugs suit against Gilead Sciences and our personal injury law firm can help.

What is Viread?

According to the NIH’s Office of AIDS Research from 2019, Viread (generic: tenofovir disoproxil fumarate TDF) is marketed as a less toxic HIV medication. The drug works by preventing the enzymes needed for the viruses to reproduce from working properly, and may help lower the amount of chronic hepatitis b / HIV in the body by decreasing the ability of the virus to multiply and infect new liver cells [1].

Medical Records

What’s the Problem with TDF HIV Drugs?

According to this 2021 research by the National Institute of Health, a lawsuit recently filed against Gilead Sciences alleges that HIV patients suffered from up to a decade of “additional accumulated kidney and bone toxicity” from tenofovir disoproxil fumarate, the active ingredient in Viread and other similar medications, while the manufacturer withheld an equally effective yet safer product with patent protection in order to maximize profits [2].

Their study also specified that at 96 weeks, TAF demonstrated superiority over TDF, with 93% versus 89% of patients having virologic suppression of HIV RNA to < 50 copies/mL (P = .017). Regardless of previous treatment, the mean BMD of the hip and spine increased in the TAF group but remained stable or decreased in the TDF group (P < .001).

Patients with spine or hip osteopenia or osteoporosis had a higher rate of recovery in the TAF group versus the TDF group. The TAF group had improved renal effects with significant improvements in proteinuria or albumin to creatinine ratios (P < .001). Fasting values of total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, and triglycerides were higher in the TAF group versus the TDF group, which was statistically significant, but of unknown clinical significance.

Results at week 48 demonstrated high rates of viral suppression among both groups (88.4% versus 87.9%) with similar improvements in CD4 count. Similar to previous studies, patients receiving TAF had smaller reductions in estimated CrCl (−5.5 mL/min versus −10.1 mL/min, P = .041), significantly less proteinuria, and smaller changes in BMD for hip (−0.62% versus −2.39%, P < .001) and spine (−1.00% versus −3.37%, P < .001).50 At 96 weeks, 86.6% in the TAF arm and 85.2% in the TDF arm were virally suppressed (difference 1.5%; 95% confidence interval [CI]: −1.8% to 4.8%).

The increased rate of bone and kidney adverse effects associated with TDF was attributed to its use in combination with a PK booster. – National Institute of Health.

TDF lawsuits claim that Gilead knew that their HIV drugs had to be given in high doses to be effective, which meant they could cause bone loss and kidney disease, yet the company failed to adequately warn about the risk of patient health on the product’s labeling.

Viread Side Effects

  • Kidney injuries
  • Bone damage
  • Bone density issues
  • Serious kidney problems
  • Kidney and bone problems
  • Kidney and bone injuries
  • Bone demineralization
  • Bone loss
  • Bone fractures
  • Osteopenia
  • Osteoporosis
  • Kidney damage
  • Kidney toxicity
  • Chronic kidney disease (CKD)
  • Renal failure
  • And more

About TDF Drugs

Viread belongs to a group of highly toxic chemical pharmaceuticals known as NRTIs (nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors). NRTI drugs work by blocking a specific enzyme called reverse transcriptase (RT). The RT enzyme helps certain types of cells copy their DNA and replicate themselves through a process called reverse transcription.

Retroviruses such as HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) utilize the RT enzyme in their early stages to duplicate and fuel the progression and expansion of the virus inside the body. TDF medication doesn’t kill the virus so it cannot cure HIV/AIDS.

However, by blocking the RT enzyme, Viread effectively prevents the HIV virus cells from multiplying. When used in combination with other drugs, TDF can not only stop HIV from growing but actually reduce the amount of HIV in the system.

TDF was developed and patented by Gilead Sciences Inc. In 2001, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved TDF for use in the treatment of HIV infection.

Viread was a groundbreaking drug and soon after its release, hundreds of thousands of people living with HIV-1 were using it to manage their condition. If left untreated, HIV can literally destroy the body’s immune system and be fatal. Viread drastically changed the outlook and prognosis of countless HIV patients.

Unfortunately, the amazing benefits of Viread came with a fairly heavy price tag. TDF is not easily absorbed into the body. As a result, users must take very high doses of the drug in order for it to have any effect. This meant that Viread had a long list of potential side effects including problems with the kidneys and loss of bone density.

A number of studies have now confirmed that continued use of Viread can cause acute kidney failure, cancer, and osteoporosis and the incidence rate of these side effects is alarmingly high.

Which Other TDF Drugs Have Been Linked to These Side Effects?

In addition to Viread, other HIV drugs that may cause the above side effects include:

Which HIV Patients are Eligible to File a Suit?

Only a qualified attorney can determine whether you are eligible to file an HIV drug lawsuit against Gilead Sciences, the maker of Viread, which is why we are currently offering free case evaluations. Simply fill out the confidential evaluation form below to contact our attorneys now.

Most cases involving pharmaceuticals allege that a drug was sold with design, manufacturing, and/or marketing defects, which typically refers to a company’s failure to warn of a certain side effect.

In the case of Viread, our attorneys suspect that patients may be able to take legal action in light of claims that Gilead failed to adequately warn doctors and patients about the risk of bone and kidney damage.

Chronic Kidney Disease Symptoms

  • Weight loss and poor appetite
  • Swollen ankles, feet, or hands
  • Shortness of breath
  • Tiredness
  • Blood in your urine
  • An increased need to urinate – particularly at night
  • Difficulty sleeping (insomnia)
  • Itchy skin
  • Muscle cramps
  • Feeling sick
  • Headaches
  • Erectile dysfunction in men

Is There a Class Action Lawsuit?

There are individual lawsuits being filed by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation. These individual lawsuits have been consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL). However, each case remains separate and gets individually evaluated.

Multidistrict litigations function to make the litigation and settlement process more efficient while maintaining the integrity of each lawsuit.

Have There Been Any Settlements?

Settlement talks will begin after a few of the Viread cases go to trial. This probably will not occur for another year or so since the lawsuits are still in the evidence-gathering (“discovery”) stage.

The results of these first “bellwether trials” will give both sides a starting point for negotiations. If the juries find Gilead liable and impose large punitive damages, Gilead may be willing to pay a large settlement to avoid further lawsuits.

See all related dangerous drugs lawsuits our attorneys covered so far.

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Have you or a loved one suffered from the adverse side effects caused by defective medication?

Get a Free Viread Lawsuit Evaluation With Our Lawyers

The Pharmaceutical Litigation Group at Schmidt & Clark, LLP law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Viread lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new personal injury cases caused by TDF medications in all 50 states.

Free Case Evaluation: Again, if you suffered a bone fracture/break, or had any kidney problems after taking existing TDF drugs or other medications used to treat HIV, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.



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