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Despite Presumption in Favor of Novartis, Zometa Claims Move Forward

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ZOMETA UPDATE 2/23/11 – A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has confirmed that long-term use of bisphosphonates like Zometa increases the risk for atypical (subtrochanteric or femoral shaft) fractures in older women. Patients are advised to weigh risks vs. benefits closely before taking Zometa. Learn More: Biosphosphonates Femur Fractures.

A U.S. District Court in Tennessee has ruled in denying a motion for summary judgement that a state presumption in favor of manufacturers does not apply to defeat product liability claims brought by plaintiffs who said they suffered severe jaw deterioration after taking the bone-strengthening drugs Aredia and Zometa.

The plaintiffs’ cases were part of a multi-district litigation claiming the bisphosphonates caused severe deterioration of the jaw.

Drugmaker Novartis argued that the plaintiffs could not overcome a presumption under Florida law that a product is not defective or unreasonably dangerous if it complies with certain codes, regulations, and standards.

The court disagreed, saying “Despite [Novartis’] assertion that [the plaintiffs] have no evidence that could overcome the presumption, [the plaintiffs] offer a myriad of evidence in support of their position.”

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