Yaz, Yasmin Settlements Continue, As Over $1.6B Paid to Resolve Cases

Bayer has paid out more than $1.6 billion in settlements over Yasmin and Yaz injuries, and the drug maker continues to face thousands of additional lawsuits that allege otherwise healthy women suffered severe blood clots due to side effects of the popular birth control pills.

According to new data disclosed in a third quarter report, Bayer indicates that the company has reached agreements to resolve roughly 7,660 claims involving venous clot injuries, such as deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism. In addition, about 8,800 claimants have agreed to resolve claims involving gallbladder injuries.

Even after resolving these cases, Bayer continues to face 5,000 Yaz lawsuits, Yasmin lawsuits, Ocella lawsuits and Gianvi lawsuits pending in courts throughout the country. The drug maker indicates that it intends to continue considering settlements in blood clot claims on a case-by-case basis, following a review of medical records.

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All of the cases involve similar allegations that Bayer failed to adequately warn women of the side effects of Yasmin and Yaz, as well as their generic equivalents, Ocella and Gianvi, respectively. The complaints claim that the fourth-generation progestin contained in the birth control pills, drospirenone, greatly increases the risk of blood clots when compared to older birth control pills.

Women say the blood clots have caused deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, gallbladder disease, heart attacks, and strokes. While all birth control pills carry an increased risk of blood clots, public attention turned to the problem after a number of deaths involving young, healthy women. Some studies have suggested that Yaz and Yasmin greatly increase those risks when compared to their competitors.

Bayer has estimated that about half of the remaining cases involve blood clot injuries, such as a deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism, for which the drug maker is currently considering additional settlements.

In the federal court system, the Yaz and Yasmin litigation has been consolidated as part of an MDL in the Southern District of Illinois, which grew at one point to become the largest consolidated litigation in the United States, with the total number of active cases surpassing the asbestos litigation last year.

The company also disclosed in the earnings report that it faces a lawsuit from the state of Kentucky, claiming that Yaz and Yasmin were illegally promoted for uses that were not approved by the FDA. It also faces a class action lawsuit filed in Israel.

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