New York, New York (PRWEB) December 17, 2013
As Risperdal lawsuits (http://www.risperdallawsuitcenter.com/ ) involving allegations that the atypical antipsychotic medication caused patients to develop gynecomastia (male breast growth) and other serious side effects continue to move forward, Bernstein Liebhard LLP notes that a newly-published report has found that the use of Risperdal and similar medications has tripled among children in the last 10 to 15 years. According to Consumer Reports, many children have been prescribed these powerful medications off-label to treat behavior problems, rather than serious mental health issues like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The report also notes that drugs like Risperdal are being increasingly used in children under as young as the age of 2, and that a disproportionate number of prescriptions are being written for poor and minority children. Among other things, Consumer Reports points to mounting evidence indicating drugs like Risperdal carry more risk than first thought as a major cause for concern.*
“This report echoes allegations that have been made in hundreds of Risperdal lawsuits regarding aggressive marketing of this drug for off-label use in children, and its potentially dangerous side effects,” says Bernstein Liebhard LLP, a nationwide law firm representing the victims of defective drugs and medical devices. The Firm is currently evaluating Risperdal lawsuits on behalf of young men and boys who may have developed gynecomastia due to their use of the drug.
Risperdal is an atypical antipsychotic drug that is approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to treat adult and adolescent schizophrenia, as well as bipolar disorder in adults and children ages 10-to-17. Risperdal is also approved to treat irritability in children (5-to-16 years of age) with autistic disorder.** Research also indicates that off- label use of Risperdal to treat ADHD is also on the rise.***
Court documents indicate that a growing number of Risperdal lawsuits have been filed in a consolidated litigation underway in Pennsylvania’s Court of Common Pleas on behalf of individuals who allegedly suffered serious side effects as a result of the medication. Dozens of these lawsuits allege a connection between Risperdal and gynecomastia. Plaintiffs further claim that Johnson & Johnson concealed Risperdal side effects, and improperly marketed the drug for off-label use in children. (In Re: Risperdal Litigation, Case Number 100300296)
On November 4th, the U.S. Department of Justice announced it had reached an agreement with Johnson & Johnson to resolve criminal and civil charges regarding the marketing of Risperdal and other drugs. Among other things, federal prosecutors had alleged that the company marketed Risperdal for pediatric uses long before it was approved for such indications in 2006. According to court documents filed in the case, the Justice Department had also charged that the company concealed side effects associated with the medication, including an association between Risperdal and male breast growth. Under the settlement, Johnson & Johnson will pay a total of $2.5 billion in criminal and civil penalties to resolve the charges levied by the federal government. (U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania, 04-cv-1529)
Risperdal patients who developed gynecomastia that may be associated with their use of the antipsychotic medication could be entitled to compensation for their injury-related damages. To learn more about the possible association between Risperdal and male breast growth, please visit Bernstein Liebhard LLP’s website. For a free case review, please call 800-511-5092.
*consumerreports.org/cro/2013/12/are-too-many-kids-taking-antipsychotic-drugs/index.htm, Consumer Reports, December 2013
*accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2009/020272s056,020588s044,021346s033,021444s03lbl.pdf, Risperdal Prescribing Information, FDA, 2009
**health.usnews.com/health-news/news/articles/2012/08/07/more-kids-taking-antipsychotics-for-adhd-study, U.S. News & World Report, August 7, 2012
About Bernstein Liebhard LLP
Bernstein Liebhard LLP is a New York-based law firm exclusively representing injured persons in complex individual and class action lawsuits nationwide since 1993, including those who have been harmed by dangerous drugs, defective medical devices and consumer products. The firm has been named by The National Law Journal to the “Plaintiffs’ Hot List,” recognizing the top plaintiffs’ firms in the country, for the past 11 consecutive years.
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Felecia L. Stern, Esq.
Bernstein Liebhard LLP
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