An Ohio resident has filed a lawsuit in the US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio against Merck over the male pattern baldness drug Propecia, alleging the drug caused him to develop permanent sexual problems at the age of 25 and also caused cognitive impairment. The lawsuit says Merck manufactured a defective and dangerous product, and that the pharmaceutical giant failed to adequately warn consumers about the risks of sexual dysfunction side effects from Propecia.
According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff began to suffer sexual dysfunction and cognitive impairment after starting Propecia in 2008, and continued to suffer side effects even after stopping the medication.
A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine in March reported a link between Propecia and sexual problems including reduced semen production, loss of libido, erectile dysfunction and the growth of male breast tissue. The study also reported that the side effects can be permanent in some people.
Many lawsuits being filed against Merck regarding Propecia allege that the company has, and continues to downplay the risk of sexual and cognitive side effects associated with Propecia, even though the company has changed the label in other countries warning men of potentially permanent side effects. In the US, warning labels still suggest that side effects will resolve after the use of the medication is discontinued.