The number one cause of death in the country is heart disease, a condition associated with multiple health risks that stem from a process called atherosclerosis, which is the slow buildup of plaque in the arteries. When these blockages occur, blood no longer flows freely through the arteries, making it easy for blood clots to form. These clots can lead to conditions related to cardiovascular disease, such as heart attacks, strokes and peripheral vascular disease.
Many factors can cause plaque to develop, with a high level of low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, being one of the main causes. The medical community colloquially refers to LDL as “bad” cholesterol, a phrase most adults in America are familiar with hearing. In fact, one in every three adults in the United States has been diagnosed with high levels of LDL, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reporting 71 million Americans, or roughly 33.5 percent of the population, have been diagnosed with having high levels of “bad” cholesterol.
Researchers have found several ways of managing LDL levels. For some, it is as easy as following a regimen of diet and exercise, while others need to add medications, including statins like Lipitor, to their daily routine. Lipitor, or atorvastatin, is a type of medication used to treat people who have been diagnosed with high levels of cholesterol. Manufactured by Pfizer, the medication slows the liver’s production of cholesterol while increasing the organ’s ability to remove existing LDL from the blood.
Although it has been on the market since 1997, a study published in 2012 led the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to update its labels for statins like Lipitor. According to researchers, nearly 50 percent of the female statin users in the study developed type 2 diabetes after starting their cholesterol control regimen.
Many lawsuits have been filed alleging that Pfizer, Lipitor’s manufacturer, was aware or should have been aware of the potential risks of the product, and warning labels and information for Lipitor did not reflect the risks of women developing diabetes until recently. If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes after taking Lipitor, contact our team of lawyers to help assert your legal rights.