Levaquin and Avelox

Levaquin (levofloxacin) and Avelox (moxifloxacin) are powerful antibiotics, included in a class of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones. This type of antibiotic is used most commonly to treat bacterial infections, including those that affect prostates in men, sinuses, kidneys, bladder and skin. The drugs are also used to treat pneumonia, bronchitis, and are given to people who have been exposed to anthrax. Both Levaquin and Avelox are administered as a pill or in an IV.

While fluoroquinolones can work well, for some patients, these drugs have significant side effects including peripheral neuropathy, which is never damage affecting the arms and legs. In fact, in 2013, the FDA published a safety announcement stating that the labeling on these drugs would be updated to include clearer warnings that the medications may cause early-onset, potentially permanent nerve damage. It has been alleged that the makers of the drugs knew for years that patients taking their antibiotics could develop serious nerve damage, yet failed to adequately warn patients and doctors about this risk.

A recent news story out of Dallas recounts one patient’s experience with muscle problems after taking Levaquin, which she was given while she was in the hospital for kidney stones. The patient says her body feels as if it is crumbling, and she is experiencing pain in her foot, leg and shoulder. You can read the news story here. Other patients in Boston and Miami have similar stories. A news story in Boston reports the story of a woman who is undergoing intense physical therapy to restore the full use of her body after taking Levaquin. She is advocating for the medication to be banned. A Nebraska woman filed suit in 2015 against the makers of Avelox after developing peripheral neuropathy after taking the drug.

Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a division of Johnson & Johnson which makes Levaquin, has been sued previously over Levaquin. While the company settled with some patients, other cases continue to work their way through the courts. Similarly, Merck, the manufacturer of Avelox, is facing claims from patients who have taken Avelox and were unaware of the risks and dangerous side effects. If you’ve taken Levaquin or Avelox, it is important to protect your rights. We are accepting cases against Janssen Pharmaceuticals and Merck, and are representing patients in both Kentucky and Tennessee. We will provide a free initial consultation with you and your family. Contact us at (270) 781-6500 or use the contact us form on our web site.

More resources

The FDA guidelines on Levaquin

The FDA guidelines on Avelox

Critics demand stronger warnings for potent antibiotics, USA Today, September 17, 2014