The first Zometa personal injury case to was took place in 2009 and was initiated by Peggy Stevens, 57, of Missoula, Montana. Stevens had lymphoma and developed osteonecrosis of the jaw. The case was brought to trial on the bases of failure to properly warn and Stevens was awarded $3.2 million in compensatory damages. Her lawyers were able to provide evidence that Novartis had known about Zometa's risks, had communicative exchanges via email about these risks, and continued to suppressed the risks.
Most recently, in February 2013, Novartis Pharmaceuticals was found liable by a New York jury for $450,000 in damages and $10 million in punitive damages, totaling $10.45 million awarded to Barbara Davids. Davids was diagnosed with stage I breast cancer and was prescribed Fosamax to treat osteoporosis and Zometa to prevent or reduce the risk of bone fracture or damage from cancer that may have metastasized to the bone. Davids also developed osteonecrosis of the jaw after taking Zometa. In this case, a central claim was that the FDA had approved Zometa on the condition that Novartis provides the FDA with stronger safety information on the drug's association with osteonecrosis of the jaw and that Novartis had falsely labelled the severity of Zometa's risk factors. Davids sought compensatory damages under negligent failure to warn, among other theories. Davids also filed a lawsuit against Merck, the manufacturer of Fosamax.
Case: Stevens, Plaintiff v. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Defendant and Appellant
Missoula Woman Awarded $3.2M in Lawsuit Against Maker of Bone-Strengthening Drug Zometa
Case: Davids, Plaintiff v. Novartis Pharmaceutical Corporation, Defendant
Jury Awards $10.45 Million in Zometa Lawsuit Over Woman's Jawbone Damage