One such lawsuit was filed in 2012 against Merck. According to the lawsuit (Blocker v. Merck & Co., Inc., et al, case number 1:12-cv-03904), Merck knew or should have known that Propecia was linked to an increased risk of depression, cognitive impairment and sexual dysfunction. The lawsuit alleges that Merck also should have known that the side effects associated with Propecia had the potential to continue even after the patient stopped using the medication.
The lawsuit alleges that the rate of sexual dysfunction related to finasteride (the generic version of Propecia and Proscar) is reportedly as high as 39 percent in published studies.
“In addition, it has been reported in 2003 that only 50% of patients experience resolution of their sexual function adverse events after discontinuation of finasteride,” the lawsuit states. Furthermore, according to the lawsuit, Merck changed Propecia’s label in Sweden to include a warning about the risk of erectile dysfunction after discontinuation of Propecia.
In his lawsuit, Jason Blocker says he was 23 years old in 2005 when he was prescribed Propecia for hair loss. During the time he took Propecia, Blocker “began to suffer severe sexual dysfunction and cognitive impairment.” These side effects allegedly continued even after he stopped taking Propecia and, at the time he filed the lawsuit, still suffered from sexual dysfunction and cognitive impairment.
READ MORE PROPECIA CANADA LEGAL NEWS
Blocker alleges Propecia is defectively designed because it can cause long-term side effects including sexual dysfunction. He also claims that the drug is unreasonably dangerous because it did not come with adequate warnings about the risk of side effects.
Merck has filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit. On June 25, that motion was referred to a judge for a recommendation.
Other lawsuits have also been filed against Merck, alleging men were harmed by the use of Propecia. Lawsuits have been consolidated for multidistrict litigation under MDL number 2331, In Re: Propecia (Finasteride) Product Liability Litigation.