Risperdal settlements have been reported in a handful of product liability lawsuits involving men and boys who allegedly developed gynecomastia (male breast growth) due to their use of the antipsychotic medication. Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceuticals have also settled a number of cases filed by state and federal prosecutors that accused the drug makers of improperly marketing Risperdal for off-label, or unapproved, uses.
Despite settlements in some Risperdal gynecomastia claims, cases continue to mount in courts around the country. If you or someone you know experienced male breast growth while using this medication, you may still be eligible to file your own lawsuit. To learn more about this litigation, please contact the legal staff at Bernstein Liebhard LLP by calling today.
Johnson & Johnson and Janssen have been named defendants in hundreds of lawsuits involving Risperdal and gynecomastia. Plaintiffs in these cases allege that male breasts associated with the medication can grow as large as D cups, and may be accompanied by:
Some of the plaintiffs are also alleged to have developed galactorrhoea, a disorder that actually causes the breasts to produce a milk-like substance.
Court documents indicate that the majority of Risperdal lawsuits involving gynecomastia allegations have been filed in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, where claims have been consolidated in a mass tort litigation. The first trial over male breast growth was supposed to begin in August 2012, but the case was settled for an undisclosed amount on the first day of the proceeding. In October 2012, Bloomberg News reported that Risperdal lawsuit settlements had been reached in five other gynecomastia claims that had been scheduled for trial.
In May 2014, Law360.com reported that at least 80 cases pending in the Pennsylvania Risperdal litigation had been resolved. Details of the settlements were not revealed.
Alleged victims of gynecomastia and other side effects tied to the medication are not the only parties to have filed Risperdal lawsuits. In recent years, a number of civil cases have been brought by state and federal prosecutors over the tactics used by Johnson & Johnson and Janssen to drive Risperdal sales. Among other things, these lawsuits accused the companies of promoting the drug for off-label use in elderly dementia patients and children, and of minimizing or concealing its potential risks. The claims also alleged that doctors were paid kickbacks by the drug makers in order to induce them to prescribe Risperdal.
In August 2012, the companies reached Risperdal settlements totaling $181 million with 36 states and the District of Columbia. In resolving the cases, the companies did not did not admit wrongdoing or admit to any violations of the law. In addition to the monetary penalties stipulated by the settlements, Johnson & Johnson and Janssen agreed not to make false or misleading claims about Risperdal, and to disclose payments made to doctors and other health care professionals.
A little over a year later, Johnson & Johnson and Janssen agreed to pay $2.2 billion to settle similar charges involving Risperdal and other drugs that had been levied against them by prosecutors at the U.S. Department of Justice. While they did plead guilty to one criminal charge regarding the marketing of the drug to elderly dementia patients, the drug makers did not admit to any wrongdoing in resolving charges that Risperdal was illegally marketed for pediatric uses.
While a number of gynecomastia lawsuits involving the drug have settled, it’s impossible to predict whether or not any additional Risperdal claims will be resolved, or how much the cases might be worth. However, in these types of product liability claims, successful plaintiffs are often compensated for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and other injury-related damages.
If you would like to learn more about recent Risperdal settlements, or arrange for a free evaluation of your gynecomastia case, please contact our office as soon as possible by calling . Our legal staff will take the time to answer any questions and fully explain the process for filing a claim against the manufacturers of Risperdal.