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Spotlight on Accutane

January 1, 1970 · FLEMING | NOLEN | JEZ, L.L.P.

Accutane is a drug to treat severe acne. It was marketed and sold by Hoffman La Roche, until recently when the company pulled it from the U.S. market. Generic forms of the drug are still sold under the names Claravis, Istane, Decutan, Amnesteem, Sotret, Ratane, Raccutane and generic Isotretinoin. Accutane has been associated with a wide variety of serious side effects. These possible side effects include birth defects, suicidal ideation, and variations of inflammatory bowl disease, Crohn’s Disease, and Ulcerative Colitis.

The manufacturer of Accutane and some of the generic manufacturers are being sued by people from all over the United States claiming severe and even debilitating injuries from use of the drugs. Included among the claims is that the labelling for the drugs did not adequately convey the risks of inflammatory bowl disease, Crohn’s Disease, or Ulcerative Colitis. Accordingly, many of the people suing are alleging that the labelling failed to adequately warn of the risks associated with the drugs.

Because some drugs are associated with serious or even potentially fatal side effects, it is imperative that drug companies provide clear, accurate, complete warnings on their products. These warnings must not be false or misleading in any particular. With accurate information patients can make informed decisions about the risks and benefits of taking the drugs their doctors prescribe for them. Patients should try to read the labels of the drugs prescribed to them and should not be afraid to ask their doctors questions about the medications.

Unfortunately, even diligence by a patient may not always lead an informed patient, particularly if the drug company is not forthcoming about the potential side effects of its drugs. Despite what some drug companies may want people to believe, the companies themselves are legally responsible for the products they manufacture, distribute, and sell. The drug company is in the best position to know what side effects are associated with their drugs, not doctors, not patients, and not even the FDA. The company that seeks to profit from the benefits of a particular drug is also liable for harm caused by the drug.


In the last two months, Fleming | Nolen | Jez, L.L.P. has filed more then 20 new cases against Hoffmann – La Roche Inc. in New Jersey Superior Court for Accutane victims. The people we represent are suffering the ravages of Inflammatory Bowl Disease, Crohn’s Disease, and/or Ulcerative Colitis. There are now more then 3,000 of these cases pending in New Jersey, and more are being filed every week.