Pharmaceutical company Johnson and Johnson (J&J) offered another settlement in one of the latest Risperdal lawsuits that was to be heard at trial in just a few days. According to an article posted by FiercePharma, the case involved a family from Mississippi in which the plaintiff, a young boy, was prescribed Risperdal after being given an unconfirmed diagnosis for bipolar disorder back in 2004. However, within a short amount of time the boy began to gain a significant amount of weight, as well as develop large female like breasts. This condition is known as gynecomastia which is an hormonal imbalance, causing noncancerous breast tissue to form in males. The lawsuit alleged that “J&J knew the side effect was more common in adolescents than they had previously disclosed, but failed to warn doctors and patients about the risks. According to Risperdal’s warning label, gynecomastia occurred in 1 out of 1,000 men taking the drug. The label later warned that gynecomastia in boys is 23 times more common than in men.”
This is not the first time J & J have had to pay out over this issue. The law firm representing the above client, Arnold & Itkin, also secured a $76 million dollar verdict in another Risperdal lawsuit. Two plaintiffs also represented by the firm are allowed to also seek punitive damages against J & J as well.
J & J have previously found themselves in hot water with the Department of Justice (DOJ) in 2013, over claims that the company labeled the drug as safe for use with children and teens, before being approved for sale to those ages. The company paid $2.2 billion dollars in settlement. The then-U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder commented on the decision stating that “[the] conduct at issue in this case jeopardized the health and safety of patients and damaged the public trust.”
If you or a loved one are suffering from gynecomastia as a result of Risperdal use, contact our office at (303)-999-9999 or at (303)-835-9342 to schedule a free consultation and speak with one of our experienced attorneys. You may also visit our other blog post covering Risperdal here, as well as our practice area page on pharmaceuticals for more information.