$80,000,000 Settlement Involving Pharmaceutical

posted on:
January 16, 2008

author:
Staff

category:
Medical Devices and Drugs | Landmark Verdict

Over 700,000 Americans had used the drug Baycol before it was withdrawn from the market in August 2001. Many deaths were linked to Baycol as were cases of renal failure requiring dialysis. Muscle pain, weakness, tenderness, fever, dark urine, nausea, and vomiting are symptoms of rhabdomyolysis. The litigation focused on Bayer's early knowledge of Baycol being much more potent than other statins and it's much higher risk to patients. Over 3000 rhabdomyolysis claims have been settled since the withdrawal with over $1 billion paid to those injured. Beasley Allen personally handled over 80 million dollars of these claims.

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At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Jury establishes link between cancer and creosote, awards former railroad worker

posted on:
July 21, 2017

author:
John Tomlinson

category:
Environmental

john tomlinson Jury establishes link between cancer and creosote, awards former railroad workerA Wisconsin jury awarded James Brown $7.5 million for the cancer he developed from exposure to benzene during his 31-year career as a railroad worker. It determined that Brown’s employers failed to adequately inform him of the health risks and provide appropriate protective equipment to reduce those risks.

The National Law Review reports that for the first time publicly the jury also established a link between Brown’s cancer and his exposure to creosote, a chemical containing benzene.

According to Righting Injustice, “Creosote is a chemical formed by the distillation of tars and other materials such as wood or fossil fuel.” The scent-producing hydrocarbons are byproducts of benzene and other related recurrent compounds.

Brown worked for Chicago & North Western Railway and Union Pacific Railroad. He handled creosote-soaked railroad ties and returned home each day with clothing soaked in in the toxic chemicals. Creosote and benzene often enter the body through the skin and Brown’s skin absorbed the chemicals from his clothing.

Doctors diagnosed Brown with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), which soon developed into Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). According to the National Cancer Institute (Institute), this type of cancer occurs when the bone marrow makes abnormal myeloblasts (a type of white blood cell), red blood cells, or platelets. The Institute explains that this occurs in roughly 30 percent of the patients diagnosed with MDS.

Union Pacific Railroad argued that Brown’s exposure was not enough to cause the deadly disease. Expert testimony that the smallest exposure to the chemicals can cause AML swayed the jury. The National Law Review notes an added outcome of this case is that, “[t] his ruling is likely to influence future cases as more workers and their families come forward.”

If you would like more information about benzene exposure and benzene-related cancers such as Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), you can contact John Tomlinson, a lawyer in our Toxic Torts Section. You can reach him at 800-898-2034 or by email John.Tomlinson@beasleyallen.com. You can also find more information at www.benzene-exposure.com.

Sources:
National Law Review
Righting Injustice
Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) Foundation
National Cancer Institute

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

MDL established for Physiomesh plaintiffs

posted on:
July 20, 2017

author:
Matt Munson

matt munson MDL established for Physiomesh plaintiffs The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation created a multidistrict litigation (MDL) for claims against Physiomesh makers Ethicon and Johnson & Johnson, Righting Injustice reports. The MDL consolidates the cases in the Northern District of Georgia located in Atlanta with Judge Richard W. Story presiding.

The MDL consolidates nearly 70 lawsuits pending that were pending in 36 different district courts across the country. The complaints share common claims including deteriorating mesh that separates from the abdominal wall and travels through the body. Mesh fragments can perforate or puncture organs and cause chronic pain, infections and even death.

As Beasley Allen has described before, Physiomesh is used to repair areas of weak muscle, called hernias, in the abdomen. The mesh is used to reinforce the abdominal wall, where it is attached, and to keep the hernia from reopening. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Physiomesh in April 2010 through its fast-track 510(k) process, allowing it to bypass rigorous medical testing because of its similarities to a product already on the market – Ethicon’s Proceed transvaginal mesh. Proceed transvaginal mesh was also fast-tracked to market.

Physiomesh and transvaginal mesh are made of polypropylene, which is a flexible plastic product known to erode once implanted. Yet, because both products were fast-tracked to market, neither were safety-tested in humans prior to their market debut and scientists did not have the opportunity to observe the adverse side effects prior to mass production and marketing.

ConsumerSafety.org notes that Ethicon settled approximately 3,000 lawsuits related to problems with its polypropylene transvaginal mesh products in January 2016 as part of an MDL with thousands more claims pending. Righting Injustice reports that approximately 330,000 Physiomesh hernia repair kits were sold worldwide with likely half of them were sold in the U.S.

In May of last year, Ethicon issued a Field Safety Notice and quietly withdrew the product from markets in the U.S., Europe and Australia. The Notice warned that Physiomesh, which is considered a medical device, seemed to have higher rates of hernia recurrence and re-opening in patients using the device as compared to patients using similar devices. Yet, neither Ethicon nor Johnson & Johnson officially recalled Physiomesh.

* * *

If you or a loved one has received hernia treatment that included Physiomesh and have experienced complications, contact Matt Munson by calling 800-898-2034 or by email at Matt.Munson@BeasleyAllen.com.

Sources:
Righting Injustice
Beasley Allen

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At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

The Psychology of Whistleblowers: Why do some speak up while others keep quiet?

posted on:
July 18, 2017

author:
Lance Gould

category:
Fraud

lance gould2 The Psychology of Whistleblowers: Why do some speak up while others keep quiet?Would-be whistleblowers almost always face giant risks when they choose to challenge authority, break loyalties, and call out wrongdoing.

According to one recent psychological study, more than 90 percent of participants in a social experiment said they would disobey authority and blow the whistle on an experimenter they observed doing something immoral.

Yet in another phase of the same study, less than 10 percent of the participants actually blew the whistle when they discovered an experimenter’s cruel and immoral behavior during the realistic situational experiment. This finding echoed previous whistleblower studies that determined conformity and fear of defying authority can overwhelm a person’s impulse to do the right thing.

So what makes some whistleblowers choose to put their personal and professional lives in jeopardy while others who witness wrongdoing stay silent?

A report published by the Washington Post on July 13 delved into that question and found that there is no black-and-white answer in many cases but a variety of influencing factors.

First, a whistleblower’s belief in the rightness of his or her action must be strong enough to overcome the hazards of speaking out, the Washington Post found, citing recent studies.

The Washington Post cited a study conducted by Boston College recently found that “people who valued fairness above loyalty were more likely to say they would blow the whistle on someone who committed a crime.”

“A lot of it comes down to their ability to hold on to a set of principles in the face of countervailing social information,” Zeno Franco, a psychologist and expert in the study of heroism at the Medical College of Wisconsin, told the Washington Post. “That’s a very tough call. Most of us don’t want to be in the out-group.”

According to the Washington Post, Dr. Franco classifies whistleblowers as “social heroes” because they are apt to make personal sacrifices on behalf of the greater good, much like military heroes who go beyond the call of duty or risk their lives to help others.

Whistleblowers also are comfortable with a degree of nonconformity, which is usually tied to security in their professional roles, the Post reports.

Situational factors also make a difference in whistleblowing. For instance, if a company or organization has a reputation for handling problems honestly and effectively, its employees will be more likely to voice concerns about wrongdoing.

And, while many would-be whistleblowers can be discouraged by the potential costs, knowing the risks can help some whistleblowers better prepare. “The more aware would-be whistleblowers are of the powerful social pressure they’ll face, the more they can steel themselves to withstand that pressure,” the Washington Post reports.

Pressure to blow the whistle may also come from considering the price of staying silent, especially if something the whistleblower values and loves is threatened by misconduct, be it a company, a mission, a cause, a sport, a principle, and so on.

“The term ‘the sin of omission’ is there for a reason: What will I have to live with if I don’t take action?” Dr. Franco told the Washington Post. “Usually the truth does come to light, and that can be a really powerful guiding principle.”

* * *

Are you aware of fraud being committed against the federal government, or a state government? If so, you may be protected and rewarded for doing the right thing by reporting the fraud. If you have any questions about whether you qualify as a whistleblower, please contact an attorney at Beasley Allen for a free and confidential evaluation of your claim. There is a contact form on this website, or you may email one of the lawyers on our whistleblower litigation team: Archie Grubb, Larry Golston, Lance Gould or Andrew Brashier.

Sources:
Washington Post
Boston College – ScienceDirect
Ohio State University

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Beasley Allen’s Danielle Ward Mason named to Law360 Rising Stars

posted on:
July 17, 2017

author:
Staff

category:
Community

danielle ward mason Beasley Allens Danielle Ward Mason named to Law360 Rising StarsDanielle Ward Mason, principal with Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C., has been included for the second consecutive year in the Law360 Rising Stars rankings. Law360’s Rising Stars profiles the top legal talent nationwide, younger than 40. The winners are comprised of top litigators and dealmakers practicing at a level usually seen from veteran attorneys.

“We congratulate Danielle on her continued success and hard work,” said Beasley Allen Principal & Managing Attorney Tom Methvin. “Her drive to obtain justice for her clients epitomizes our firm’s bedrock principal to put our clients first and ensure their access to justice.”

Mason, a Montgomery, Ala. native, became the first African-American female principal at the Beasley Allen Law Firm by age 37 where she proudly focuses her practice on health-related cases and is particularly motivated by cases that have the potential to advance women’s health issues. She has helped win millions of dollars in verdicts for those suffering because of reprehensible corporate conduct. These verdicts have provided a platform for raising public awareness about unsafe medical devices and drugs. They have also led to corrective action by regulators and drug manufacturers.

As part of the Beasley Allen national talc trial team, Mason has helped secure $307 million in verdicts against Johnson & Johnson (J&J) for its failure to warn about the scientific link between frequent use of its talc-containing products and the increased risk of ovarian cancer. She has also successfully litigated claims against Imerys Talc America, J&J’s talc supplier. Mason leads the firm’s Invokana litigation, representing clients who have suffered adverse side effects including diabetic coma and death, from the blood sugar regulating medicine. In January, she was appointed to the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee (PSC) for consolidated multidistrict litigation pending in New Jersey federal court concerning Invokana’s link to kidney damage and diabetic ketoacidosis.

Mason’s passion to gain justice for her clients is evident in her leadership in the firm’s Reglan litigation. A critical part of her work for this litigation has been ensuring the survival of the claims despite the challenges created by the U.S. Supreme Court’s generic preemption decision, Pliva v. Mensing, in 2011.

Nationally, Mason was also named to the 2014 and 2015 Super Lawyers “Rising Stars” list, which recognizes the top up-and-coming attorneys. She has been named one of the “10 Best” Attorneys for Alabama by the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys and was selected by her law partners as Beasley Allen’s 2016 Mass Torts Lawyer of the Year. In 2016, Mason received the American Association for Justice F. Scott Baldwin Award, which was established to honor and recognize the world-renowned trial lawyer from Marshall, Texas, whose efforts produced outstanding awards for injured victims and their families. Closer to home, she was selected by the Girl Scouts of South Alabama as the group’s inaugural Leading Lady earlier this year.

Mason graduated from Auburn Montgomery with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics in 1999, followed by a Masters of Business Administration in 2001. She began a career in commercial banking, spending five years with Regions Bank and two years at Compass Bank before entering Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. Mason is married to Dwan R. Mason and they have two sons, Jordan and Jaxon.

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Benzene exposure increases worker risk for cancer including AML

posted on:
July 14, 2017

author:
John Tomlinson

category:
Environmental

john tomlinson Benzene exposure increases worker risk for cancer including AMLMichael Krengloskie was a fireman and oiler/carman for more than three decades at the Oakland yard in California, according to the Northern California Record. Kenneth L. Kump was an electrician who worked for Consolidated Rail (Conrail) Corporation and Norfolk Southern Railway Company for 40 years, the Penn Record reports.

These men worked in the same industry and now share a similar story – they say developed cancer linked to benzene exposure at their workplaces. The men have filed lawsuits against their previous employers alleging that despite the companies’ knowledge of the chemical’s dangers, they failed to adequately protect them for years.

The National Center for Biotechnology Information explains that benzene has been a known carcinogen since it was deemed so by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in 1982. Yet many employers failed to heed the warning or employ the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommendation to use personal protective equipment for workers frequently exposed to benzene.

As Beasley Allen previously explained, frequent or prolonged exposure increases a person’s risk of developing certain types of cancer including Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). The American Cancer Society confirms this through studies showing higher rates of AML occur in “workers exposed to high levels of benzene.” Railroad workers, automobile mechanics and petroleum refining and extraction workers are just a few occupations that have a high risk of benzene exposure.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) describes benzene as a chemical carcinogen with a sweet odor. It is found in natural gas, petroleum products, plastics, lubricants, detergents, rubber products, paint and even in some food and beverages. It can be inhaled as well as absorbed through the eyes and skin.

The cancer begins as Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), which is a group of bone marrow disorders. Roughly 30 percent of the patients diagnosed with MDS progress to AML. It occurs when bone marrow cells are transformed into abnormal myleoblasts (a type of white blood cell), red blood cells or platelets. They multiply into billons of other abnormal cells and block the production of normal cells.

In the early stages of MDS, symptoms may not immediately manifest, but blood tests may reveal a reduced red cell count, sometimes with a reduced white cell count and/or reduced platelet counts. Symptoms of adult AML include fever, feeling tired and easy bruising or bleeding. A blood test on the blood and bone marrow must be used to diagnose AML.

* * *

If you would like more information about benzene exposure and benzene-related cancers such as Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), you can contact John Tomlinson, a lawyer in our Toxic Torts Section. You can reach him at 800-898-2034 or by email John.Tomlinson@beasleyallen.com. You can also find more information at www.benzene-exposure.com.

Sources:
Northern California Record
Penn Record reports
NCBI
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Beasley Allen
American Cancer Society
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Risperdal legal troubles continue to mount

posted on:
July 13, 2017

author:
James Lampkin

james lampkin1 Risperdal legal troubles continue to mount A status update meeting is scheduled this week for the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas regarding the 5,800 Risperdal cases that have been filed in Pennsylvania alone, against Johnson & Johnson’s subsidiary and drug maker Jansen Pharmaceuticals, LawyersandSettlements.com reports. The meeting comes on the heels of another important lawsuit filed last month in Missouri involving the drug, according to US News and the Associated Press.

The suit was filed by a number of child advocacy organizations against the State of Missouri on behalf of children in the state’s foster care system who were “inappropriately provid[ed] psychotropic drugs” with limited “oversight of the medications.” It is a first-of-its-kind lawsuit. One of the suit’s claims centers on Risperdal being prescribed to two children aged 2 and 3, even though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved its use in children younger than age 5.

The Jere Beasley Report notes that a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice in 2013 cost Johnson & Johnson $2.2 billion in drug marketing penalties for off-label marketing, including claims that the company aggressively marketed Risperdal for off-label uses to help control the behavior of children and adolescents.

The FDA initially approved the drug in 1994 to treat schizophrenia in adult patients. It has since been approved to treat adolescent schizophrenia, bipolar mania in adults and children ages 10 to 17 and symptoms of autism in adolescents ages 5 to 17.

In addition to the Pennsylvania cases, 16,900 lawsuits have been filed over the antipsychotic drug nationwide. The central claim in the thousands of lawsuits against the drug manufacturer is that it covered up the risk of Risperdal’s most devastating side effect, gynecomastia, which is abnormal breast tissue growth in young boys, as Beasley Allen previously described.

Neither the pharmaceutical giant nor its subsidiary have discussed settling ongoing lawsuits despite four recent jury verdicts totaling $74 million against the drug manufacturers.

* * *

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with gynecomastia as a result of taking Risperdal, contact James Lampkin, a lawyer in our firm’s Mass Torts Section, at 800-898-2034 or by email at James.Lampkin@beasleyallen.com.

Sources:
LawyersandSettlements
US News/Associated Press
Jere Beasley Report (December 2013)
Beasley Allen

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

New VA Whistleblower Act offers more protections

posted on:
July 11, 2017

author:
Archie Grubb

category:
Fraud

archie grubb1 New VA Whistleblower Act offers more protectionsAn order signed by President Trump last month, the “VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017,” will provide stronger protections to whistleblowers within the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), USA Today reported. The act reinforces the new Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection created within the department earlier this year to investigate whistleblowers’ claims in a timelier manner and to protect them from retaliation.

These added protections are a welcomed change by whistleblowers who recently helped uncover the department’s deficiencies in caring for the nation’s veterans.

In 2014, Pauline Dewenter could not remain silent any longer after learning that a navy veteran was the most recent to die while on a “secret waiting” list at the Phoenix VA Health Care System in Arizona. As a scheduling clerk at the facility, Ms. Dewenter was inadvertently placed in a position of determining who on the waiting list got appointments. She knew the practice was not right and “blew the whistle” about a list of veterans waiting to receive care – some for as long as four months.

The facility maintained the list and she discovered that records were changed or physically altered “to hide how many people died while waiting for care.” A report released by Senator Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) at the same time revealed that “[n]early 1,000 veterans’ deaths have been linked to…substandard care.” Ms. Dewenter admitted she believed more people would come forward, but they feared retaliation.

Even as recently as May, whistleblowers like Dr. Dale Klein, a doctor at John J. Pershing VA Medical Center in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, described how a culture of retaliation still exists within the VA, according to FOX News. In May, Dr. Klein’s employment was supposed to be terminated, but instead he returned to work only to sit in his office all day without seeing patients – something he has been doing for a year since he spoke out about substandard care practices at the facility.

The Yale University fellow was hired to establish a pain management clinic, but after voicing concerns about waiting lists for veterans seeking care Dr. Klein says the VA took away his patients and privileges and attempted to fire him. However, the Office of Special Counsel, an independent federal investigative agency in Washington, D.C., informed the VA that the doctor could not be fired because he is a whistleblower. Instead, Dr. Klein continues to receive his $250,000 annual salary despite not working with the veterans he wishes to help.

While it better protects whistleblowers like Ms. Dewenter and Dr. Klein, the act also reduces the time allowed for employees to appeal disciplinary actions and requires courts reviewing the actions to support them if they find “substantial evidence” that an action was appropriate. These measures allow the department to terminate problem employees more quickly – ensuring more accountability for the services provided for our country’s veterans.

* * *

Are you aware of fraud being committed against the federal government, or a state government? If so, you may be protected and rewarded for doing the right thing by reporting the fraud. If you have any questions about whether you qualify as a whistleblower, please contact an attorney at Beasley Allen for a free and confidential evaluation of your claim. There is a contact form on this website, or you may email one of the lawyers on our whistleblower litigation team: Archie Grubb, Larry Golston, Lance Gould or Andrew Brashier.

Sources:
USA Today
CNN
Senator Tom Coburn
FOX News

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Workplace benzene exposure linked to cancer

posted on:
July 7, 2017

author:
John Tomlinson

category:
Environmental

john tomlinson Workplace benzene exposure linked to cancerThe American Society of Safety Engineers gathered in Denver for its annual conference in June, and Canadian Occupational Safety magazine reports that workplace exposure to cancer-causing agents was a key theme for the conference. Connie Muncy, senior health and safety administrator at AES Corporation, explained to the group that workplace cancers are the leading cause of occupational death. The International Labour Organization reports that globally one person dies every 52 seconds because of workplace exposures to cancer-causing agents that were predictable and preventable.

Benzene is a cancer-causing culprit workers are frequently exposed to because it is a chemical widely used in many industries and products. Beasley Allen has previously explained that benzene exposure has been linked to the development of certain, rare cancers including Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), lymphomas and aplastic anemia. Certain occupations are at a higher risk of on-the-job benzene exposure including railroad workers, automobile mechanics and petroleum refining and extraction workers.

In June, Persistence Market Research released preliminary findings of a study that will be available in August. The research predicts AML will increase at a faster rate in years to come because of the rise in exposure to benzene. In the coming weeks, we will discuss how this catastrophic trend continues to linger in the country’s industrial sector; how juries are beginning to accept the scientific link between benzene exposure and the development of rare cancers; and the multi-million dollar efforts by the petrochemical industry to cover up the truth about benzene-related cancers.

The workers who develop these cancers dedicated their careers to companies that refused to protect them, despite decades-old evidence of the dangers. Regardless of conditions and danger, they worked to get the job done only to find out years later their jobs had levied an unnecessary death sentence upon them. Because it takes years for these cancers’ symptoms to manifest, the once faithful workers are normally abandoned by their former employers. They are left holding the bag for what remains of their bleak future – facing few effective treatment options, coupled by the out-of-pocket costs for their own care.

* * *

If you would like more information about benzene exposure and benzene-related cancers such as Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), you can contact John Tomlinson, a lawyer in our Toxic Torts Section. He can be reached at 800-898-2034 or by email John.Tomlinson@beasleyallen.com. You can also find more information at www.benzene-exposure.com.

Sources:
Occupational Safety
Beasley Allen
Persistence Market Research
American Cancer Society

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Proton Pump Inhibitor kidney injury claims MDL request renewed

posted on:
July 6, 2017

author:
Liz Eiland

liz eiland Proton Pump Inhibitor kidney injury claims MDL request renewedIn June, attorneys representing some of the 172 claims against proton pump inhibitor (PPI) manufacturers filed a new motion with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) requesting the cases be consolidated into a multidistrict litigation (MDL), Righting Injustice reports. A previous motion to consolidate 15 cases was denied earlier this year. Yet, patients who filed the new request believe they have addressed the JPML’s concerns with an increased number of similar claims

Plaintiffs’ claims seek to hold PPI manufacturers accountable for failing to warn about the possible kidney damage they developed after taking PPIs.

Beasley Allen previously explained that PPIs are heartburn drugs that have been sold to treat acid-related disorders since the 1980s. The most commonly prescribed are Prilosec, Prevacid and Nexium, which consumers can now purchase over-the-counter. Evidence of adverse side effects, some life threatening, continues to grow, linking PPI use to Acute Interstitial Nephritis (AIN), inflammation in the spaces between the kidney tubules, and an increased risk of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI or Acute Renal Failure) and Chronic Kidney Disease.

The renewed motion proposes that the MDL be established in the U.S. District Court for New Jersey since a significant number (62) of the cases are already filed in that district. The cases filed in New Jersey and those filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois have currently progressed further than those in other locations.

The new motion also addresses additional concerns the JPML described when it denied the first request. Although the defendants vary in the claims, the plaintiffs’ claims involve only seven products with five defendant groups – like other complex cases where MDLs were established.

An MDL consolidates many cases with similar claims so that certain overarching issues can be addressed at one time in a centralized location. The claims usually arise in different states and become subject to varying state laws. An MDL streamlines the process, reducing the duplication within the judicial system. It also spreads the significant costs each plaintiff must bear across the board, making justice more accessible for those injured by a company’s product or bad corporate behavior.

Lawyers in our firm’s Mass Torts Section are currently investigating cases involving PPI use and AIN, AKI or Acute Renal Failure, and Chronic Kidney Disease. If you would like more information, contact Liz Eiland, at 800-898-2034 or by email at Liz.Eiland@beasleyallen.com.

Sources:
Righting Injustice
Beasley Allen

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Abilify multidistrict litigation approaches 200 lawsuits

posted on:
June 30, 2017

author:
Melissa Prickett

melissa prickett1 Abilify multidistrict litigation approaches 200 lawsuitsA multidistrict litigation (MDL) has been established for nearly 200 lawsuits filed against Bristol-Myers Squibb and Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. the makers of Abilify, reports the Daily Hornet. The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation centralized the Abilify MDL in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District for Florida with Judge M. Casey Rodgers presiding.

Beasley Allen previously noted that the top-selling antipsychotic drug in the U.S. was first approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2002 to treat adults with schizophrenia and later approved to treat symptoms of a variety of mental disorders, including bipolar disorder and depression.

The Daily Hornet also reports that Marlene C. from East Hanover, New Jersey, filed one of the most recent suits against the pharmaceutical giants. Marlene’s claims are similar to those included in other lawsuits that have been combined in the MDL, including impulse-control problems she developed while taking Abilify.

The Daily Hornet reported she began taking the drug in 2014 and lost more than $10,000 through uncontrollable behaviors – gambling and shopping – before she stopped taking it in 2016. Abilify’s label did not mention “gambling” until January 2016. Four months later, the FDA issued a drug safety communication about “compulsive or uncontrollable urges to gamble, binge eat, shop and have sex.” The notice was based on numerous reports from patients who had taken the drug.

In 2007, the drug cost its makers $515 million when, according to the U.S. Department of Justice, the companies settled with state and federal regulators for an array of civil allegations including marketing the drug to treat elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis. The previous year, the FDA issued a black box warning cautioning against that particular use of the drug due to an increased risk of death for elderly dementia patients.

Just last year, the companies agreed to shell out another $19.5 million to 42 states and Washington D.C. to resolve additional claims that they improperly marketed and promoted the drug for off-label uses.

* * *

Lawyers in Beasley Allen’s Mass Torts Section are currently investigating cases involving Abilify and compulsive gambling. If you have any questions regarding the litigation, or if you would like us to review your potential claim, please contact Melissa Prickett, a lawyer in the Mass Torts Section. She can be reached at 800-898-2034 or by email Melissa.Prickett@BeasleyAllen.com.

Sources:
Daily Hornet
U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation
Beasley Allen
Daily Hornet
U.S. Department of Justice

Free Legal Consultation
At Beasley Allen, there is never a fee for legal services, unless we collect for you. Contact us today by filling out a brief questionnaire, or by calling our toll free number, 1-800-898-2034, for a free, no-cost no-obligation evaluation of your case.
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