Breast Cancer Drug Taxotere Linked to Permanent Hair Loss

Author: Jason W. Konvicka, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Taxotere, a chemotherapy drug manufactured by Sanofi-Aventis, has been linked to permanent hair loss in patients undergoing cancer treatment.[1] While there are safe and effective alternative drugs that do not cause permanent hair loss, the side effect warnings for Taxotere indicate hair loss is only temporary. Of all patients with breast cancer who used Taxotere, approximately 9% suffer from permanent hair loss, according to doctors participating in Taxotere studies. This unintended effect irreversibly damages a woman’s self-esteem, causes emotional distress, and can even lead to severe depression.

Taxotere and hair loss (alopecia)

Taxotere (docetaxel) is a drug manufactured by Sanofi-Aventis to prevent cancer cells from growing and dividing. It is among the most popular chemotherapy drugs used to treat breast cancer, generating more than $3 billion in revenue prior to Sanofi-Aventis losing patent protection. The majority of women treated with Taxotere were unaware of the risk of alopecia due to Sanofi’s negligence in warning the public. In fact, lawsuits are being filed across the nation, claiming that Sanofi hid research that links Taxotere to alopecia.

What are the side effects of using Taxotere?

Numerous side effects are associated with Taxotere[2] and include:

  • hair loss (alopecia)
  • numbness in the fingers and toes (neuropathy)
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • constipation
  • fatigue
  • muscle pain
  • bone or joint pain
  • mouth or throat sores

What Should I Do If I Think I Have Developed Complications Due To Taxotere?

If you think that your medication is causing you injury, you should discuss your personal medical situation with your doctor(s). They are the ones best suited to investigate complications. If you are suffering significant hair loss that has lasted at least six months, Allen & Allen is available to discuss your legal options with you.

Our firm is investigating Taxotere claims. Contact us for a free consultation by calling 1-866-388-1307.

About The Author: Jason Konvicka is a partner and trial attorney with Allen & Allen in Richmond, Virginia. During his 20+ year career, he has achieved numerous record-setting jury verdicts and substantial settlements on behalf of his clients. His practice focuses on medical malpractice, bus accidents and product liability personal injury cases. Outside of the courtroom, Jason is involved with the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association and currently serves on its Board of Governors as Vice President.


[1] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22571858

[2] http://www.breastcancer.org/treatment/druglist/taxotere

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