Pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson has faced multiple Risperdal lawsuits, and earlier this year, 6,400 more plaintiffs received a court’s permission also to seek recovery of damages that the side effects of taking Risperdal caused. Risperdal is an antipsychotic drug approved to treat adult schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and irritability in autistic adolescents and children.
However, investigations led to a fine of more than $2 billion against the manufacturer and a subsidiary in 2012 after they found proof of marketing of the drug for unapproved uses. The uses included depression, anxiety, hostility, confusion and agitation. Evidence even suggested that Johnson & Johnson knew about the gynecomastia, stroke and cardiac event risks all along.
Typical side effects that led to lawsuits
If you are one of the many victims of improperly prescribed Risperdal in Louisiana, you might be a victim of one of the following side effects:
- Hyperprolactinemia: This condition causes premature puberty in girls and could bring about lactation in women — even if they are not pregnant or breastfeeding. Other consequences can include loss of male and female libido and impotence in men.
- Gynecomastia: Hundreds of young boys, adolescents and adult men developed breasts for which the only fix is painful mastectomy surgeries. The abnormal growth of breasts naturally also cause suffering and humiliation.
- Tardive Dyskinesia: Uncontrollable movement developed in many patients. It is typically an irreversible condition, and prolonged use of the medication increases the likelihood of development.
- Type II Diabetes Mellitus: Excessive weight gain and insulin resistance are both risk factors in the development of Type II diabetes. Risperdal was found to cause both these, and nerve problems, vision problems and even death can result from diabetes.
- Cardiovascular Events: Elderly patients were never part of the approved age group for Risperdal prescriptions. However, most of the legal claims for cardiac events such as heart attacks and strokes involved older patients.
What outcome can you expect from a lawsuit?
The fact that there are so many Risperdal lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson could indicate the viability of any related claim. However, the support and guidance of an experienced Louisiana medical malpractice attorney is essential to make a proper determination. Should a claim be found to have merit, the following types of compensation might form part of a settlement or a monetary judgment if the case succeeds in court:
- Medical expenses: Medications, hospitalization and surgery costs can be astronomical, and you might recover past and future expenses.
- Pain and suffering: Risperdal side effects can cause severe pain and suffering, including the emotional suffering that might even lead to depression in men who suffered gynecomastia that required painful mastectomies.
- Loss of income: Frequent medical appointments, hospitalization and other consequences of taking Risperdal can cause significant income losses.
- Funeral costs: If you lost a loved one due to the adverse Risperdal side effects, you could claim recovery of the expenses related to end-of-life arrangements.
- Punitive damages: Since the deliberately deceitful techniques Johnson & Johnson used with this medication caused harm to so many, it may move the jury to award punitive damages as punishment and to avoid further deception.