Many people want to know, does Taxotere cause permanent hair loss? This page will address everything that is currently known about Taxotere and hair loss.
Does Taxotere Cause Hair Loss?
Taxotere is a chemotherapy treatment that is commonly used worldwide to treat breast cancer. Hair loss is common with many types of chemotherapy and has come to be expected. Most people lose some or all of their hair when undergoing treatment, but they expect it to grow back after a few months. The problem with Taxotere is that for many women their hair never grows back. This condition is known as alopecia.
Further, it seems as though both Sanofi-Aventis and many of the medical institutions that used this form of chemotherapy were aware of the side effect and withheld that information from their patients. This is the reason for many of the lawsuits that are being filed.
So, yes, Taxotere does cause hair loss. The problem is, though, that is the hair never grows back.
Permanent Hair Loss (Alopecia) Cause for Litigation
This link between Taxotere and hair loss that is permanent seems to have been known since as early as the 1990s. Since 2005, in every country except the United States, doctors have been informing their patients that this type of chemotherapy may cause permanent hair loss. There are other types of chemotherapy that can be used to treat breast cancer that do not have this side effect that are just as effective, if not more. Because of this many oncologists outside the US have offered alternatives and women have chosen to use other treatments. This, of course, decreases Sanofi Aventis’ revenue for those countries.
In 2015, the FDA started requiring doctors to tell their patients that this treatment may cause permanent hair loss, or alopecia. Since then, the lawsuits and claims have been pouring in.
So from 2005 to 2015, the rest of the world (everywhere but the United States) was told about the consequences of Taxotere before they used it and had the opportunity to use something else. Meanwhile, in the United States, patients were using this chemotherapy without being told about the permanent adverse side effects it has. For ten years, Sanofi-Aventis concealed this to protect their profits.
As of this writing, there is no known cure for alopecia.
What Women Can Do Now
Especially for women, alopecia is a devastating condition. It is not only the hair on top the head that is absent, but also the eyebrows and eyelashes. Some women have said that they would rather have lost a breast to cancer than all of their hair with no chance of it ever growing back.
Many women and their families are outraged at the deception. The fight against cancer is one of the most challenging times for both the patients and their families. Constant trips to the hospital, feeling weak, how to pay for their treatment, and the uncertainty of not knowing if you will even survive, are just a few of the trials these patients and their families must deal with.
During of the most difficult times of their lives, the professionals who they trusted with their health and their lives were dishonest with them. Add to that that there is no known cure for alopecia, and you can see why patients who have been victims of this deception are turning to the courts for justice.