Risperdal Gynecomastia Settlement Reached As Trial Gets Underway In Philadelphia
Only a few hours after trial began this week in Philadelphia for a product liability lawsuit brought by a young man who claims he experienced male breast growth from Risperdal side effects, Johnson & Johnson has reportedly agreed to settle the case.
The trial involved a claim brought by Christopher Walker, who indicates that he developed a medical condition known as gynecomastia following use of the atypical antipsychotic, alleging that Johnson & Johnson failed to adequately warn consumers and the medical community.
Gynecomastia involves the full development of breasts among teen boys and young adult males, often resulting in the need for surgical removal and causing severe psychological injury.
The case is one of roughly 1,300 similar Risperdal gynecomastia lawsuits pending in Pennsylvania state court, and was the third in a series of bellwether trials scheduled to help gauge how juries may respond to certain evidence and testimony that is likely to be repeated throughout the litigation.
In February 2015, the first Risperdal bellwether trial in Pennsylvania ended in a $2.5 million jury award, with a second case the following month ending with a defense verdict. While that second jury found that the plaintiff failed to establish that his abnormal breast growth was caused by the medication, the same jury determined that Johnson & Johnson failed to adequately warn the boys and their parents about the gynecomastia risks.
While the outcomes of the cases are not binding on other claims, they are being closely watched by lawyers involved in the litigation, as they may influence negotiations to reach Risperdal gynecomastia settlements that would avoid the need for hundreds of individual trials to be scheduled.
Johnson & Johnson has been quietly dealing with breast growth litigation over Risperdal for years, but the number of cases has continued to grow as more families and young adults learn that there may be a link between problems suffered following a diagnosis of gynecomastia and Risperdal use as a child.
In 2012, a different series of cases were scheduled to go before juries in Philadelphia, but the drug maker reached agreements to settle the Risperdal lawsuits just as the trials were set to begin.
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