The California product liability attorneys at Cutter Law P.C. are investigating claims involving Viagra, a prescription medication for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED).
In 1998, Pfizer Inc., a multinational pharmaceutical company based in New York City, launched Viagra, generically known as sildenafil citrate. The prescription drug, also referred to as "the little blue pill," has been linked to an increased risk of melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer.
Viagra was designed to help treat ED by increasing blood flow to the penis. The drug quickly grew in popularity and became one of the all-time best-selling drugs in the history of the pharmaceutical industry, nearing $2 billion in sales annually.
Pfizer originally developed Viagra to treat cardiovascular disease, but discovered during initial trials that it was a potential treatment for ED. The drug's active ingredient, sildenafil, is a PDE5 inhibitor, which helps increase blood flow to different parts of the body, most specifically the penis and lungs. PDE5 is an enzyme that slowly breaks down the smooth muscle cells lining blood vessels that supply blood to the body. The use of a PDE5 inhibitor such as Viagra increases blood flow to areas where PDE5 is present.
Melanoma Linked To Viagra Use
A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine in 2014 discovered a link between Viagra use and melanoma. Annually, melanoma results in nearly 10,000 deaths. Researchers believe that sildenafil's inhibition of PDE5 may enhance melanoma cell invasion.
According to the JAMA study, recent use of Viagra was associated with an 84 percent increased risk of developing melanoma over a 10-year period compared with men who did not use Viagra. Additional research findings showed that men taking Viagra developed melanoma at twice the rate of men who did not use the drug.
Symptoms Of Melanoma
According to the American Cancer Society, common signs of melanoma include:
- A mole with edges that are irregular, ragged, notched or blurred
- A mole larger than 6 millimeters across (about ¼ inch, the size of a pencil eraser
- A mole that changes in size, shape or color
- An asymmetrical mole or birthmark
- A mole whose color is not the same all over and may include shades of black, brown or sometimes patches of pink, red, blue or white
Viagra Lawsuits — Failure To Warn
Since its FDA approval in 1998, over 23 million men have been prescribed Viagra. Our office is investigating claims that Pfizer failed to warn consumers and the medical community about the risk of skin cancer associated with the use of Viagra.
Contact A California Viagra Lawyer
If you or a loved one has taken Viagra and been diagnosed with melanoma skin cancer, you may be eligible to file a Viagra lawsuit. Contact the Viagra lawyers at Cutter Law P.C. for a free case evaluation.
Because we are a contingency-based firm, there is never an upfront cost to you. We front all costs to prosecute your claim and get paid only if we win a monetary recovery. Give us a call toll free at 888-285-3333 or fill out the contact form below.