Johnson & Johnson has been slapped with a $70 million verdict in a case alleging that the antipsychotic drug Risperdal (generic: risperidone) caused an adolescent boy to grow prominent breasts, a condition known as gynecomastia.
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one developed gynecomastia after taking Risperdal, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit against the manufacturer and our lawyers can help.
What’s the Problem?
July 5, 2016 – A Philadelphia jury on Friday awarded Andrew Yount the $70 million, the largest award levied to date against J&J for failing to provide adequate warnings about the risk of gynecomastia from Risperdal. The Tennessee boy started taking Risperdal in 2003 when he was just 5-years-old, and developed male breast growth just 1 year after beginning a regimen with the drug.
J&J is currently facing more than 1,500 lawsuits alleging that Risperdal caused abnormal breast development in boys, and the company has lost several that have already gone to trial. However, the recent $70 million award is many times larger than the damages awarded in previous cases.
In the first Risperdal bellwether case to go to trial, the jury handed $2.5 million to the plaintiff, a teenager who grew 46DD breasts as a result of his use of the drug. A second verdict reached last November included $1.75 million in damages against J&J.
Bellwether trials are used as indicators of a potential settlement in a litigation, and because of the size of the recent verdict, the drugmaker may feel pressured to reach an agreement with the rest of the plaintiffs.
Allegations raised in the complaints are similar: boys and young men who developed female breasts after taking Risperdal. J&J knew for years about this potential side effect, but hid this information from the public and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), according to the lawsuits. The agency required that Risperdal labels be updated with information about the gynecomastia risk in 2006.
In one case, a Philadelphia jury decided that J&J failed to warn that Risperdal could cause males to develop abnormal breast tissue, but also found that the plaintiff didn’t prove his gynecomastia was caused by the drug.
In 2013, J&J agreed to pay $2.2 billion to resolve off-label marketing allegations by the U.S. Justice Department and several states over claims that it promoted Risperdal for use in pediatric patients before the FDA had approved it for this indication.
The drugmaker also settled marketing claims with 36 states and the District of Columbia over Risperdal marketing for over $180 million, in addition to another settlement in Texas for $158 million. Earlier this year, the Supreme Court denied J&J’s final appeal of a $124 million penalty for illegally Risperdal marketing in South Carolina.
Do I Have a Risperdal Lawsuit?
The Pharmaceutical Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Risperdal lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new gynecomastia cases in all 50 states.
Free Confidential Case Evaluation: Again, if you were injured by Risperdal side effects, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.