Newsroom America reports that risperidone, a drug whose brand-name version is now involved in hundreds of Risperdal lawsuit filings, is among the most commonly prescribed antipsychotics to children and adolescents in Germany.
According to findings published on January 30, a study using data from the Barmer GEK statutory health insurance company reveals that children and adolescents who were prescribed an antipsychotic drug between 2005 and 2012 grew at an average rate of 0.23% to 0.32%. Children between 10 and 14 years old, and adolescents ages 15-to-19 saw the highest percentages in atypical antipsychotic scripts like Risperdal, according to Newsroom America. These numbers are still significantly lower than in America, but are considered average for countries in Europe.
Research performed stateside reveals similar increases in antipsychotic drug use among children. In December 2013, Consumer Reports published findings of an investigation that showed a three-fold increase in the usage of medications like Risperdal in children over the last 15 years. This drug, which is manufactured by Johnson & Johnson and distributed by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., was not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for pediatric uses until 2006. Given that information, the medication may have been prescribed off-label in several of these cases, and may now be involved in Risperdal gynecomastia lawsuits.
As per its investigation, the consumer watchdog group also reported that Risperdal and other anti-psychotic medications were frequently prescribed to treat behavioral issues in children, and not for bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and other FDA-approved uses.
A recent settlement involving Johnson & Johnson’s marketing of this drug and several others indicates that the company has been accused of promoting Risperdal off-label for the past 10 years. In an agreement reached in November 2013, the company agreed to pay the U.S. Department of Justice $2.2 billion to resolve criminal and civil charges brought against them. The federal government was accused of marketing Risperdal to elderly patients with dementia and children, and failing to warn about the medication’s association with male breast growth, a condition known as gynecomastia.
In a consolidated litigation underway in Pennsylvania state court, court documents indicate that over 200 claims alleging complications associated with Risperdal gynecomastia and other side effects have now been filed.
If you or a loved one developed male breasts after taking Risperdal, you may be entitled to compensation for out-of-pocket medical expenses, lost wages and other damages. Call us for more information at .