Posted on 24th September, 2020
by Legal Staff
As one of the several available medications to treat human immunodeficiency virus and hepatitis B virus infection, Truvada has been on the market since 2012, when it was approved by the Food and Drug Administration. However, the drug was approved for pre-exposure prophylaxis, meaning that it was intended to be taken by people who are HIV-negative as a preventive measure from contracting the virus. Truvada was found to lower the risk of contracting HIV to a significant extent by medical studies if taken once a day, as it contains two medicines, namely Emtriva and Viread. According to the results of medical research, Truvada provides a reduction of 92% to 99% of the risk of contracting HIV. Nevertheless, regular use has recently been associated with kidney damage.
Kidney function may become from mildly to moderately impaired in certain individuals who take Truvada on a regular basis, as the medication is highly toxic. When the body eliminates the medication through the kidneys, it may cause damage to the organs. In people with preexisting kidney damage, Truvada may worsen it to a great extent. For this reason, it is a good idea for individuals who are taking Truvada on a daily basis to undergo regular medical examination of their kidneys in order to prevent the occurrence of kidney damage. While it is in rare cases that treatment with Truvada causes severe kidney damage or even kidney failure, people should be very cautious when taking this medication. Because the kidneys are the organs that filter our blood and subsequently reabsorb useful components such as sugars, amino acids and minerals, drugs such as Truvada may build up in the organs over the years, thereby damaging the fragile kidney tubules.
Minor declines in the filtration and reabsorption capacity of the kidneys are often asymptomatic, but they may worsen over the years, particularly if treatment with Truvada is not interrupted. Taking the medication on a regular basis may eventually result in serious kidney tubule damage, medically known as tubulopathy. The symptoms of tubulopathy include the following:
The results of a study conducted to show how kidney function changes when one takes Truvada on a regular basis reveals that people with great exposure to the drug, as well as the elderly, are more likely to experience kidney damage as a result of treatment with this medication. The researchers measured cumulative drug exposure by examining the levels of tenofovir and emtricitabine, the two active components of Truvada, in hair samples. Subsequently, they assessed kidney function with a serum creatinine test and by estimating how fast the kidneys were working to filter the blood (eGFR). If the measure of eGFR is higher than 90 mL/minute, kidney function is normal, but if the measure of eGFR is 60 mL/minute, the kidney function is moderately impaired, whereas if the measure of eGFR is 30 mL/minute or lower, kidney function has been severely damaged.
The only manufacturer of Truvada is Gilead Sciences, Inc. Nevertheless, the company failed to add a warning on the label of the medication with regard to the risk of developing kidney damage as a consequence of regular treatment with the drug. For this reason, if you came to struggle with kidney damage as a result of taking Truvada on a daily basis, you are eligible for compensation.
There have been numerous people filing claims with Gilead Sciences, Inc. for kidney damage, as well as for loss of bone density, caused by treatment with Truvada within recent years. The experienced and knowledgeable team of experts at Atraxia Law can help you learn about your legal rights. For additional information, please contact us and we will gladly answer all your questions and address all your concerns.