4 sue for cost of monitoring fen-phen effects

October 18, 1997|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

Four people filed a class-action suit in U.S. District Court in Baltimore yesterday against the makers of three controversial weight-loss drugs they allege put them at risk for heart and lung conditions.

Georgiana Donlin of Whiteford, Robert Patro of Elkton, Barry Steeley of Woodstock and Julie Watson of Timonium sued 12 drug companies seeking payment for continued medical monitoring for ailments they allege can be caused by the drugs fenfluramine and phentermine -- together called fen-phen -- and dexfenfluramine, also known as Redux.

They allege the drugs can cause primary pulmonary hypertension and valvular heart disease.

The suit is at least the third such suit in Maryland since June, when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent a letter to the nation's doctors asking them to report instances in which patients developed heart-valve defects after taking fen-phen.

The suit was filed on behalf of all Maryland residents who have taken the drugs.

Pub Date: 10/18/97

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