Pfizer Inc was founded in 1849 by two German-American cousins, Charles Pfizer and Charles Erhart. Headquartered in New York City, the company grew rapidly due to early product successes like: the antiparasitic drug santonin and citric acid compounds. In world War 1, Pfizer became a leader in fermentation technology which helped them become a large producer of penicillin during World War 2. However, the Pfizer of today truly emerged in 1950, when the company switched its strategic focus from producing fine chemicals to becoming a true pharmaceutical company with heavy investments in research and development. Today, Pfizer is one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies.
Pfizer has produced some of the world’s most successful pharmaceuticals including:
Pfizer Financial Success
Pfizer has grown to be one of the world’s most powerful companies. In 2014, Pfizer was ranked #51 on the Fortune 500 list with revenues that reached $53.8 Billion, and profits of 51% of total revenues. They own several of the world’s most popular and profitable drugs, currently is the fourth largest pharmaceutical company in the world in terms of revenues, and is the second largest pharmaceutical company in the United States.
Viagra & Melanoma Lawsuits
Viagra (Sildenafil) was developed by Pfizer in the early 1990s as a drug to treat heart disease. Early trials for the drug showed that it showed little promise in effectively treating heart disease. However, as a side effect, men reported an increase in erections after taking the drug. Viagra quickly conducted new trials and repurposed the drug as a treatment for male impotence. Viagra received FDA approval in 1998 for treatment of erectile dysfunction.
Viagra exploded in popularity and is one of the most well known drugs around the world for its treatment of erectile dysfunction in men. Although it has been hailed a miracle drug for men suffering from ED, Viagra use in some men have resulted in serious side effects.
Viagra use in some men has been associated with serious side effects such as:
- Vision impairment
- Heart attack and stroke
- Melanoma cancer
Numerous studies have been done about the safety of Viagra and the FDA requiring new labeling to warn consumers of the dangers of taking the drug. A new serious side effect has surfaced study done by peer reviewed Journal of American Medicine Association (JAMA), released a study following over 25,000 men. The study found that there may be a connection between Viagra use and an increased melanoma risk. There is currently no warning on the label for an increased risk of melanoma and lawsuits are now being filed by men and families of men who have developed melanoma after taking Viagra.
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