The Makers of Risperdal Report 18,500 Lawsuits, To Date

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Public Health Watchdog Breaking News
Public Health Watchdog Breaking News

Johnson & Johnson Discusses Risperdal Lawsuits in its Most Recent Annual Report

To date, some 18,500 Risperdal (risperidone) lawsuits are pending against Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary, Janssen Pharmaceuticals. The lawsuits are pending in the United States and Canada, according to Johnson & Johnson’s most recently released annual report.

Johnson & Johnson’s most recent annual report for the fiscal year ended January 1, 2017 was filed on February 27, 2017. The report indicated that Johnson & Johnson and some of its subsidiaries are involved in a number of product liability claims and lawsuits that involve a number of products. Of the most significant litigation totals are those that are faced by Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceutical, which involve 18,500 brought over Risperdal. Risperdal is a drug that is used in the treatment of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and irritability associated with autism.

Many of the lawsuits brought against Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceuticals allege that the antipsychotic medication, Risperdal, may lead to breast growth in boys. This condition is known as gynecomastia.

Risperdal lawsuits have been filed, for the most part, in state courts in Pennsylvania, California, and Missouri; however, other actions are pending in a number of courts nationwide, as well as in Canada. Meanwhile, the drug makers have suffered losses in Risperdal lawsuit judgments and settlements. For example, in January 2017, Janssen Pharmaceuticals settled a lawsuit in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania three days before what would have been the seventh trial involving Risperdal in the past two years. Settlement terms remain confidential. Also, in July 2016, a jury awarded a $70 million judgment in favor of the plaintiff, a teenaged boy who alleged in the lawsuit brought in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania that he developed gynecomastia after being treated with Risperdal.

According to Johnson & Johnson’s annual report, the health care company and its various subsidiaries are facing thousands of lawsuits involving DePuy and Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implants; Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower powder; the medication, Xarelto; and more than 54,000 pelvic mesh lawsuits. The annual report also indicated that, as of January 1, 2017, Johnson & Johnson concluded that liabilities associated with specific litigation matters are “probable and can be reasonably estimated,” which also assures shareholders that litigation on the thousands of pending lawsuits is not likely to negatively impact Johnson & Johnson’s profits.

The annual report also indicated that, “In the company’s opinion, based on its examination of these matters, its experience to date and discussions with counsel, the ultimate outcome of legal proceedings, net of liabilities accrued in the company’s balance sheet, is not expected to have a material adverse effect on the company’s financial position.” Johnson & Johnson also acknowledged in its annual report that the number of product liability lawsuits is growing. “The number of pending product liability lawsuits continues to increase, and the company continues to receive information with respect to potential costs and the anticipated number of cases.”

Risperdal lawsuits allege that the drug caused gynecomastia and that the drug maker concealed Risperdal’s association to severe side effects. In numerous cases, plaintiffs allege that Janssen Pharmaceuticals touted the medication for uses not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), a violation of federal law. A U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing recently indicated that some 13,000 Risperdal lawsuits have been filed nationwide. Johnson & Johnson also indicated in the filing that it created an accrual for Risperdal litigation and may have to amend the amount if additional information emerges.

Meanwhile, in addition to product liability claims, the makers of Risperdal faced federal criminal charges over the way in which they marketed the drug and were accused of illegally marketing Risperdal for off-label uses in children and the elderly. Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceuticals agreed to a misdemeanor charge and to pay $2.2 billion to settle the case.

Parker Waichman LLP has represented numerous clients in personal injury lawsuits regarding defective drugs and continues to offer free legal consultations to individuals with questions about filing a Risperdal Gynecomastia lawsuit.

What Is Risperdal?

Risperdal is an atypical antipsychotic medication that works by changing the activity of certain natural brain substances. Risperdal was approved in 1993 for the treatment of schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders.

Thousands of young men have blamed Risperdal for causing abnormal breast tissue growth and lawsuits have revealed a tie between Risperdal and gynecomastia, as well as diabetes, heart attack, high blood sugar, stroke, tardive dyskinesia (repetitive, involuntary movements that may include grimacing and blinking), and even death.

Symptoms of gynecomastia include breast swelling, tenderness, and pain and/or galactorrhoea, which is unexpected nipple discharge from one or both breasts. Victims of gynecomastia and galactorrhoea have alleged that these types of adverse reactions due to their taking Risperdal have also led to them to having suffered shame. These young men have also alleged having to undergo serious medical breast removal treatment. Male breast sizes in gynecomastia cases have been as large as D and DD cups, leading to the need for these men to undergo surgical procedures such as liposuction or mastectomy. Both of these surgical procedures are painful and invasive surgeries. Mastectomy is an extensive surgery that involves removal of both excess breast tissue and fat.

Prolactin is a female hormone that is involved in the development of breasts in females and also for lactation (milk production) in pregnant women. Research has also revealed that children who take Risperdal have excess prolactin levels in their blood. And, at least one study found that prolactin levels in individuals taking Risperdal may persist for as long as two years after the patient has ceased taking the drug.

Filing a Risperdal Gynecomastia Lawsuit

If you or someone you know suffered injuries related to the use of the antipsychotic, Risperdal, you may have valuable legal rights. Our Risperdal Gynecomastia personal injury lawyers offer free, no-obligation case evaluations. For more information, call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).