Nurse’s Family Files Avandia Wrongful Death Lawsuit against GlaxoSmithKline

San Diego, California, December 18, 2007 - - Rogelio Larosa and his adult son, Eric, of National City, San Diego County, California, filed a lawsuit on Monday, December 17, 2007, against Philadelphia-based GlaxoSmithKline ("GSK"), the maker of Avandia (rosiglitazone maleate), in U.S. District Court, Southern District of California (San Diego) accusing GSK of causing the wrongful death of a Chula Vista nurse due to its negligence, fraud, breach of warranty and a failure to warn about the risks of its drug, Avandia. Read the complaint

The lawsuit alleges that Milagros Larosa, 65, over the course of one year, was hospitalized three different times for heart problems, classified as myocardial ischemic events (a painful heart condition caused by blockage or lack of blood flow to the heart) and ultimately suffered a fatal stroke, caused by the Avandia she was taking for her type 2 diabetes. She had no prior heart problems or any type of a heart condition before starting Avandia.

Milagros suffered her first heart blockage in December of 2004 and subsequently suffered two more blockage attacks, one in January 2005 and the other in July 2005, each requiring a heart bypass or "coronary revascularization" to restore the flow of oxygen and nutrients to her heart. Following her myocardial ischemic event in July, Milagros had to be placed in a nursing home where she could be given constant care. She then suffered a stroke and died on December 20, 2005.

The attorneys for the family allege in the complaint that GSK, before getting approval for Avandia, knew, or should have known, that Avandia was associated with a significant increased risk of heart failure, myocardial ischemia (also known as angina) and ischemic events such as cardiovascular mortality, myocardial infarction (heart attack), and stroke.

The lawsuit also alleges that GSK negligently and carelessly failed to fully disclose the results of testing and other information in its possession from clinical trials, physicians, patients and regulatory authorities, regarding the association between Avandia and heart failure, heart attacks and

stroke. The complaint further alleges that GSK over-promoted Avandia, carelessly promoted it as safe and effective and failed and refused to adequately warn the medical community and the consuming public of the risks associated with Avandia until the FDA finally took action.

The original Avandia label underwent several changes in the seven years leading up to the first black box warning, each time strengthening the label, warning of an increased likelihood of congestive heart failure. On August 14, 2007 the FDA finally issued the first black box warning for Avandia regarding the potential increased risk of heart failure. Three months later, on November 19, 2007, a second black box warning was added to the Avandia label regarding the potential increased risk of heart attacks and other myocardial ischemic events like those suffered by Milagros Larosa.

Roger Drake, one of Larosas’ attorneys from the Baum Hedlund law firm which filed the lawsuit, says that GSK continues to manufacture certain drugs that cause more problems than they solve. "In the process of our previous litigation, we have acquired a number of internal GSK documents regarding Avandia. GSK may have used a similar method for concealing known side effects of Avandia, which Baum Hedlund discovered while litigating against GSK in Paxil cases."

Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman has extensive experience in litigating personal injury, wrongful death and consumer class action cases against major drug companies including thousands of Paxil cases against GlaxoSmithKline. In addition to handling many Avandia wrongful death and personal injury heart attack and stroke cases, the firm is also preparing for upcoming Paxil suicide trials.

About The Larosa Family

Milagros and Rogelio (a.k.a. Roger) were married for 36 years. They had one son, Eric, who moved back in with his parents after his mother’s first hospitalization. At the time of her first heart event, Milagros was on vacation from her work as a Registered Nurse at Frederica Convalescent Hospital in Chula Vista, where she worked for 20 years. She had been a nurse for 30 years and she and her husband were planning to retire soon and move back to the Philippines. They originally left the Philippines in 1966 to move to America and were looking forward to their move back where they could be close to their extended family.

Avandia MDL (Multidistrict Litigation)

The Larosa case will eventually be transferred and consolidated with the other federal cases (accusing GSK of concealing Avandia heart attack risks), already transferred to Philadelphia to join the MDL No. 1871, In re Avandia Marketing, Sales Practices & Products Liability, formed in October by the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation.

The Avandia MDL is being overseen by U.S. District Judge Cynthia M. Rufe of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania where GSK’s U.S. headquarters is located, where many witnesses reside, and where many relevant documents are located.

Baum Hedlund attorney Roger Drake estimates there are about 50 cases (state and federal) filed across the U.S., some of which have already been transferred to the Avandia MDL. That number continues to grow as new lawsuits are filed.

The MDL will address common fact questions regarding GSK's manufacture and marketing of Avandia, Avandamet and Avandaryl.