There have been nearly 500 lawsuits filed against Johnson & Johnson (J&J) regarding their popular antipsychotic drug Risperdal. It has been reported that this drug can cause gynecomastia, abnormal breast growth in children and adult males. J&J has begun settling cases before they go to trial. It is anticipated that thousands more cases could be filed in the coming year, leading to a widespread settlement.
Risperdal was developed to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism. However, J&J reportedly encouraged doctors to prescribe Risperdal for the unapproved treatment of ADHD in children, writing hundreds of thousands of prescriptions. J&J has been fined more than $1.2 billion for this alleged false marketing.
J&J faces liability for alleged fraudulent marketing of Risperdal for uses not approved by the FDA, that the drug was defective and dangerous and that they failed to warn consumers.
In 2012, the first Risperdal lawsuit was scheduled to begin trial for a 21-year-old male who developed male breasts after taking the drug, requiring surgery to remove them. J&J has settled this case, as well as others, for undisclosed amounts in order to avoid damaging public trials.
Besides the dangers and painful effects of mastectomy surgery to correct the gynecomastia, the emotional effects of this condition are devastating to an adolescent boy.
Gynecomastia is a condition linked to elevated prolactin hormones, which can lead to abnormal breast development and milk production in children and adult males. The hormone can also delay male sexual development in young boys. Studies have shown that as many as 87 percent of children taking Risperdal can have elevated prolactin hormones, increasing risk of gynecomastia.
In addition, researchers have reported this year that Risperdal can cause children to develop type II diabetes at three times the normal rate. This puts them at risk for a lifetime of vision, hearing, skin and blood pressure issues.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not issued a recall of Risperdal, despite the adverse effects reported, nor have they required warnings be posted on labels of the drug. This does not prevent those affected from seeking compensation from J&J for their damages.
If you or a loved one has taken Risperdal and suffered gynecomastia or other adverse side effects, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact one of our Gacovino Lake attorneys for more information at 1-800-246-HURT (4878).