Fournier’s Gangrene Lawyer

Some patients who start treatment with some of the most commonly used diabetes medications on the market are developing a flesh-eating bacterial infection in their genitals. The infection affects both male and female patients and requires immediate medical intervention. Patients who develop the condition, known as Fournier’s gangrene or necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum, say they were never warned about the increased risks of developing the condition and are demanding to know why. Genital gangrene lawsuits are being filed on behalf of patients across the country who develop this condition after beginning treatment with an SGLT2 inhibitor diabetes medication, like Farxiga or Jardiance.

Commonly Used Diabetes Drugs May Cause Serious, Flesh-Eating Bacterial Infection of the Genitals (Fournier’s Gangrene)

The FDA has issued a warning to doctors and patients that some of the most commonly used diabetes medications may cause some patients to develop a rare but serious flesh-eating bacterial infection of the genitals.

According to a warning communication issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Association, some patients who are treated with diabetes medications in a class called SGLT2 inhibitors may develop an extremely rare, flesh-eating bacteria that attacks the perineal, perianal, and genital tissues and results in the death and decay of these tissues. Complications of Fournier’s gangrene include acute renal failure, sepsis, and multiple organ failure. If left untreated, the condition can lead to death.

Patients who develop necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum will require the dead and decaying tissue to be surgically removed, and the area cleaned. Some patients might have to endure multiple surgeries and patients who develop this condition are often left scarred and disfigured.

Bacterial Infection Developed within Months of Starting Treatment

In a warning communication issued by the FDA, the government watchdog agency reported that it had identified 12 patients who were diagnosed with Fournier’s gangrene between 2013 and 2018. Seven men and five women were diagnosed with the condition within three months of starting diabetes treatment with an SGLT2 inhibitor. Each of the patients had to have surgery to remove dead and damaged tissue, and some were forced to endure multiple procedures. Some of the patients developed serious complications, and at least one patient died.

The FDA said that when it reviewed cases of Fournier’s gangrene in patients who were treated with diabetes drugs other than SGLT2 inhibitors, it found only six cases in the past 30 years. The agency is urging medical professionals and their patients to report side effects, including flesh-eating bacterial infections to the MedWatch program.

While diabetic patients have an increased risk of developing gangrene of the genitals, they rarely do. In fact, this type of gangrene occurs in only about one out of every 100,000 males in the U.S. However, the incidence of developing gangrene of the genitals within the first three months of beginning treatment with an SGLT2 inhibitor may be higher, but the FDA does not yet know the actual rate of occurrence. As more patients become aware of the association between SGLT2 inhibitors and Fournier’s gangrene, the FDA should be able to develop better data.

Fournier’s Gangrene and SLGT2 Inhibitors

Fournier’s gangrene is an extremely rare condition in which patients become infected with bacteria that can destroy the tissues that surround and support the blood vessels, fat, nerves, and muscles of the perineum. Normally, this infection begins with a break or cut in the skin and having diabetes increases the risk of developing the condition. But even still, the condition is rare and is estimated to occur in less than two of every 100,000 males in the U.S. The condition most often occurs in males between 50 and 79, but the FDA reports it observed the condition in both men and women.

Commonly Used SGLT2 Inhibitors Associated with Genital Gangrene

The FDA listed SGLT2 inhibitors that are currently on the market for the treatment of diabetes. Each of them was approved within the last five years. If you or a diabetic patient you love was treated with one of the following medications and developed genital gangrene, you might be entitled to seek compensation for your injuries.

  • Farxiga approved in 2014
  • Jardiance approved in 2014

Each of these drugs is now required to warn of the increased risk of developing necrotizing fasciitis of the genitals also called Fournier’s gangrene on their labels.

 Symptoms of Fournier’s Gangrene

Male and female patients who start on an SGLT2 inhibitor like Faxiga or Jardiance need to be aware of the symptoms of a potential bacterial infection. These symptoms include:

  • Genital tenderness
  • Redness or swelling of the genitalia
  • Fever above 100.4 F
  • General feeling of unwell

Patients who notice tenderness, color changes including red or dusty looking skin, or swelling of the tissues between the genitals and anus, or who develop a fever within the first few months of starting treatment with an SGLT2 inhibitor should seek medical attention as quickly as possible. Fournier’s gangrene is a rapidly progressing condition that can quickly lead to severe and potentially fatal complications.

Patients Are Demanding Justice

Lawsuits are being filed across the U.S. on behalf of patients who diagnosed with genital gangrene, sometimes called necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum or Fournier’s gangrene, after starting treatment for diabetes with an SGLT2 inhibitor like Jardiance, Farxiga, or others. Plaintiffs in these cases are alleging the manufacturer knew or should have known about the increased risks of developing this dangerous condition but failed to warn physicians and patients about this increased risk. These patients are seeking justice and compensation for the injuries they sustained and the surgeries and complications they endured. Patients who were left disfigured and scarred and those who suffered severe complications such as sepsis, renal failure, and organ failure may be entitled to significant financial compensation.

We Can Help

We are filing lawsuits on behalf of diabetes patients who developed a flesh-eating bacterial infection in their genitals after beginning treatment with an SGLT2 inhibitor. Plaintiffs in these cases want to know when the drug makers knew or should have known about the increased risks of Fournier’s gangrene and why the manufacturers failed to warn patients about these risks.

Patients have rights, including the right to make informed healthcare decisions. When drug makers fail to warn patients about the risks and adverse events associated with their products, they deny patients that right. Patients who suffer injury, including genital infections, surgeries, disfigurement, and complications including sepsis, renal failure, and multi-organ failure, are demanding justice from SGLT2 inhibitor drug makers.

The lawyers at our firm have a long history of defending the rights of patients who suffer harm from the drugs they are treated with and ensuring the injured receive the maximum compensation available to them by law. Contact us today to learn more about your rights and whether you are eligible to seek justice and maximum compensation the injuries you sustained and the losses you suffered as a result of SGLT2 inhibitor gangrene of the genitals.

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