New York, NY (PRWEB) June 21, 2013
Parker Waichman LLP, a national law firm dedicated to protecting the rights of victims injured by defective drugs, notes that a number of lawmakers are telling the Arkansas Supreme Court to uphold the $1.2 billion fine imposed on Johnson & Johnson (J&J) by a lower court for off-label marketing claims related to the company’s antipsychotic drug Risperdal, according to a June 18 Associated Press report published on WashingtonPost.com.
As noted in the report, state Attorney General Dustin McDaniel called on the state’s Supreme Court justices to reject J&J’s appeal of the lower court’s ruling in which the drug maker was found to have downplayed and hid risks associated with Risperdal use (State of Arkansas v. Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc., case no: CV07-15345). Numerous supporters have emerged to back the lower court’s decision, including 35 state attorneys general, 65 Arkansas lawmakers, as well as former U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Donald Kennedy, the report added.
The allegations that J&J had made off-label marketing claims centered on the company’s effort to prompt doctors to prescribe Risperdal for children before the FDA had approved the drug for use by children, according to an August 30, 2012, Reuters report. The FDA initially approved Risperdal for use by adults, in 1993; it wasn’t approved for children until 1997. As the Reuters article related, drug makers can only legally promote their drugs for FDA-approved uses. Doctors, on the other hand, are free to prescribe a drug for any reason they see fit – when it is for something not approved by the FDA, it is called using the drug “off-label.”
Risperdal is an antipsychotic medication used to treat conditions such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and acute mania associated with autistic disorders. It has been linked to side effects such as male breast growth, known as gynecomastia. On April 1, 2006, the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology published a report releasing its findings that levels of prolactin – which is the hormone that stimulates milk production – are increased in Risperdal users. Parker Waichman LLP is offering free case evaluations for patients who took Risperdal and suffered from gynecomastia and other unexpected side effects. Symptoms of gynecomastia, as defined by the Mayo Clinic on its website, include:
Parker Waichman LLP continues to offer free lawsuit consultations to victims of Risperdal side effects. If you or a loved one took Risperdal and suffer from Gynecomastia, please visit the firm's Risperdal Side Effects page at yourlawyer.com. Free case evaluations are also available by calling 1-800-LAW-INFO (1-800-529-4636)
Contact: Parker Waichman LLP
Gary Falkowitz, Managing Attorney