Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Aug 5, 2019

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Litigation over tendon rupture injuries from Levaquin, Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) antibiotic drug used to treat respiratory and urinary tract infections, is heating up. Fifteen new Levaquin lawsuits have been filed in Illinois court alleging that J&J and subsidiaries Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical and J&J Pharmaceutical Research and Development knew for years that Levaquin, a fluoroquinolone antibiotic also known as levofloxacin, caused severe tendon problems, but that the companies failed to warn consumers and manipulated clinical data to increase profits.

Illinois Levaquin lawsuits

The 15 latest Illinois lawsuits filed in September allege that plaintiffs were injured by Levaquin’s side effects, such as tendonitis, tendon apathy, injuries related to the Achilles tendon and other tendon ruptures. They also allege that the manufacturers, 1) knew about these risks, 2) failed to warn consumers, 3) actively engaged in covering up Levaquin’s side effects and 4) manipulated clinical data in order to increase profits.

Hundreds of lawsuits have now been filed against the manufacturers and companies that distributed the antibacterial drug such as Walgreens. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) also issued a Levaquin black box warning in 2008 – the most serious warning available.

Other dangerous fluoroquinolone drugs

Other fluoroquinolone antimicrobial drugs are subject to the same black box warning and the following manufacturers face similar lawsuits over their drugs:

  • Bayer. ciprofloxacin (marketed as Cipro and generic ciprofloxacin), ciprofloxacin extended release (marketed as Cipro XR and Proquin XR) and moxifloxacin (marketed as Avelox)
  • Oscient Pharmaceutical. gemifloxacin (marketed as Factive)
  • Merck & Co. norfloxacin (marketed as Noroxin)
  • Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical (a subsidiary of J&J). ofloxacin (marketed as Floxin and generic ofloxacin)

Have you been injured by Levaquin?

Although studies have shown that Levaquin tendon injuries may occur more frequently in patients over 60, those taking steroids (corticosteroids) or those who have undergone lung, heart or kidney transplants, anyone who has taken the drug can be at risk of serious injury. If you’ve been injured due to Levaquin use, contact a Levaquin lawyer to discuss your situation and evaluate your options.