Bayer Faces 12,000 Lawsuits Over Yaz, Yasmin Birth Control Pills

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Bayer Faces 12,000 Lawsuits Over Yaz, Yasmin Birth Control PillsOverview: Some 12,000 US lawsuits are pending against Bayer over the oral contraceptives Yaz and Yasmin. Patients across the US are alleging that the birth control pills caused blood clots, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), pulmonary embolism and other complications. Bayer has already agreed to pay over $400 million to settle the injury claims.

 

 

  • Yaz and Yasmin are birth control pills containing drospirenone; this class of oral contraceptives has been associated with an increased risk of blood clots and blood clot-related disorders
  • In April, the FDA updated the safety label on Yaz, Yasmin and other birth control pills containing drospirenone to warn about the increased risk of blood clots
  • There are over 12,000 lawsuits in the US alleging that Yaz or Yasmin caused serious complications; most of the the suits have been consolidated into  the Yaz, Yasmin multidistrict litigation

Product: Yaz, Yasmin (Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol)

Manufacturer: Bayer AG

Side Effects & Complications

  • Blood Clots
  • Pulmonary Embolism (PE)
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
  • Gallbladder Damage
  • Heart Attacks
  • Stroke

Lawsuits Claim Yaz, Yasmin Caused Blood Clots, Other Complications

Currently, there are approximately 12,000 lawsuits pending against Bayer over Yaz and Yasmin. In fact, Yaz and Yasmin were among the most commonly named drugs among personal injury lawsuits last year, according to the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP). The non-profit patient safety group said in their latest QuarterWatch report that there were more than 8,300 cases involving Yaz or Yasmin in 2011 alone. Many of the cases have been filed in the multidistrict litigation (MDL. No 2100), which has been centralized before Judge David R. Herndon in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois.

Many lawsuits are claiming that the heavily-marketed birth control pills caused blood clots and blood clot-related disorders, including deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. Some plaintiffs are also alleging that Yaz or Yasmin caused gallbladder disease.

So far, Bayer has agreed to pay $402.6 million to settle nearly 1,900 lawsuits over alleged injuries from Yaz and Yasmin. If the company continues to pay out at this rate, the litigation may end up costing over $1 billion.

Background

Yasmin and Yaz were approved in 2001 and 2006, respectively. While the pills were initially marketed as a convenient birth control method for the modern woman, it has come under scrutiny over reports of blood clots, DVT, pulmonary embolism and other side effects- most likely because it contains drospirenone, a synthetic hormone. In April, the FDA updated the warning label on drospirenone-based birth control pills like Yaz and Yasmin to warn about the increased risk of blood clots. According to the new label, some research studies suggest that there might be a three-fold increased risk with the use of these pills.