Risperdal and Male Breast Development: What to Know
Risperdal and the usual set of facts. Imagine this nightmare scenario: You are a male teen suffering from some mental disorders. Your parents try everything to treat you. You see a doctor who prescribes a drug that is thought to correct your mental suffering. This treatment may or may not help with the mental disease, but soon you notice detrimental side effects you were unware could occur.
This medication was created by Janssen Pharmaceuticals that is used to treat mental disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and mood swings caused by autistic disorder. Males who used this drug for treatment of such disorders, however, may experience uncomfortable male breast growth.
What Complications Can Arise from Risperdal Usage?
Risperdal can cause an increase in levels of prolactin, which is a hormone which triggers breast development in females. Unfortunately, an increase in prolactin has the same effect on males as well.
Males who originally took the drug to help with mood/mental disorders may develop gynecomastia, or a development of male breasts. Along with growth of breast tissue, males have also developed breast pain and, in some cases, can begin to lactate.
Other side effects from Risperdal usage include:
• Tardive dyskinesia, a disorder resulting in involuntary facial and body movements
• Increased mortality in elderly patients
• Weight gain
• Low blood pressure
Litigation and Settlements
In 2013, Janssen’s parent company, Johnson & Johnson, agreed to pay over $2.2 billion to settle cases accusing the company of improper promotion of Risperdal. Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr., accused Johnson & Johnson of “recklessly put[ting] at risk the health of some of the most vulnerable members of our society” for marketing the drug toward children, the elderly, and the disabled.
Thousands of cases have been filed against Janssen Pharmaceuticals for gynecomastia caused by Risperdal, alleging that Janssen was aware of the potential side effect and failed to warn users of the possibility of gynecomastia. Philadelphia appears to be the hub for these lawsuits, and thousands of cases have been filed against Janssen in the First District of Pennsylvania. In July of this year, a jury awarded a teenage plaintiff $70 million against Johnson & Johnson for male breast growth caused by Risperdal. A jury also awarded $2.5 million to a man with autism who experienced similar side effects from the drug.
I’ve Experienced Complications from Taking Risperdal—What Now?
If you have taken this drug and have experienced unusual side effects such as male breast growth, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your experience. The Mass Tort Team at the Lovely Law Firm is here to help you with your case every step of the way. To schedule a case evaluation free of charge to determine whether you are eligible for compensation, call 843-839-4111 today. Currently this litigation may be approaching an end, therefore time is of the essence to assert your claim in order to obtain compensation.
Drug info: http://www.janssen.com/us/sites/www_janssen_com_usa/files/products-documents/risperdal.pdf
Risperdal case list: https://www.courts.phila.gov/apps/clc/caselist.asp?search=Risperdal
Eric Holder quote: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/05/business/johnson-johnson-to-settle-risperdal-improper-marketing-case.html