Trileptal Off-label Use Increases Chances of Getting SJS and TENS

Trileptal is an anticonvulsant drug that the FDA approved for treatment of seizures (another drug used for this is Dilantin). However, it often is prescribed for people who suffer from bipolar disorders as well as neuropathic pains. The FDA doesn’t approve of Trileptal being used to treat bipolar disorders or neuropathic pain, as using it in this manner is considered an “off label” use of the medication.

Trileptal also is well known to cause Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TENS). In fact, back in 2005, the manufacturers of the drug, Novartis, added this association to the label. The chances of patients getting SJS or TENS while taking Trileptal increases by as much as 10 times. Since Trileptal often is prescribed to treat conditions that it is not approved for, some patients may be entitled to receive compensation for their SJS or TENS if their condition can be attributed to use of the drug.

In fact, the makers of Trileptal recently settled a lawsuit that claimed the company was marketing the off-label uses of the drug. The company also was accused of bribing doctors into prescribing it for off-label uses. This settlement was used as a means of getting rid of a whistleblower lawsuit that was being filed against them. It cost the company half a billion dollars to avoid the whistleblower lawsuit as well as federal charges.

Even though drugs often are used in off-label ways by doctors to treat various conditions, it is illegal for the drug companies to market drugs for off-label treatment uses that they haven’t been approved for yet. SJS and TENS are serious skin reactions to medication that causes patients to suffer from painful blisters all over the mucus membranes in the nose, eyes, mouth and genitals. It also can cause the skin to peel off on as much as 30 percent of the body. SJS and TENS can cause permanent damage — even death.

If you have suffered from SJS or TENS as a result of using Trileptal for treatment of bipolar disorder or neuropathic pain, you may be entitled to compensation. Call me for a free consultation. I will fight hard to get you every dime you may be entitled to.

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