Over 700,000 Americans had used Bayer’s cholesterol lowering medication, Baycol, before it was withdrawn from the market in August 2001. Baycol was linked to increased risk of rhaddomyolysis. Rhaddomyolysis is a very serious condition characterized by the breakdown of muscle tissue in the body, which can cause renal failure and death. After many reports of this condition and over 100 deaths, Bayer had to pull the drug off the market. Baycol is no longer sold anywhere in the world.
The litigation focused on Bayer’s early knowledge of Baycol being much more potent than other statins and its much higher risk to patients. Bayer documents reveal the company was desperate for Baycol to become a blockbuster drug that could generate millions of dollars of income for their pharmaceutical division.
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.
New York Times
Wall Street Journal