Risperdal Settlement Reached Just Days Before Gynecomastia Trial Set To Begin

Johnson & Johnson has reportedly agreed to settle a product liability lawsuit brought by a boy who developed gynecomastia from Risperdal, resolving the case just days before trial was set to begin over claims that the drug maker failed to adequately warn families and doctors about the risk that young boys may develop full breasts following use of the antipsychotic medication.

There are currently about 7,000 Risperdal lawsuits pending against Johnson & Johnson, each involving similar claims that teens or young adult males developed full size breasts following use of the medication, often resulting in the need for breast removal surgery.

According to a report by FiercePharma.com, settlement was reached late last week in a case set to go before a Pennsylvania state court jury this week. However, no details of the agreement have been released.

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Risperdal Lawsuits

Side effects of Risperdal linked to risk of breast growth among young boys, or gynecomastia.

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The case involved a complaint filed on behalf of a young boy from Mississippi, who was prescribed the antipsychotic after being diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2004. According to the lawsuit, the side effects of the drug resulted in him developing breasts and gaining weight.

While Johnson & Johnson has been facing litigation over Risperdal gynecomastia problems¬†for several years, a panel of judges in Pennsylvania ruled earlier this year that plaintiffs can pursue punitive damages claims, which increased Johnson & Johnson’s potential exposure from the lawsuits several-fold.

Most of the Risperdal litigation is centralized in Philadelphia, where the state court cases is being handled as part of a mass tort proceeding, since each claim raises similar questions of fact and law.

While the drug maker has reached some Risperdal settlements in individual cases, most agreements have come on the even of trial.

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