Risperdal Lawsuit Information Center


 

Risperdal filings are mounting in courts around the country, following a number of significant verdicts in favor of men and boys who developed gynecomastia, or male breast growth, due to their use of the antipsychotic drug. Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen Pharmaceuticals unit have reportedly settled a small number of gynecomastia cases, and in recent years they have also resolved lawsuits filed by federal and state authorities over the tactics allegedly used to market Risperdal.

Bernstein Liebhard LLP, a nationwide law firm that represents those harmed as a result of serious drug side effects, offers free case reviews to alleged victims of Risperdal and gynecomastia. Those eligible to file such a claim include men or boys treated with the brand-name medications Risperdal, Risperdal Consta, or Invega, and who experienced any of the following:

  • Diagnosis of gynecomastia
  • Swollen or painful breasts
  • Lactation
  • Surgical treatment, such as mastectomy or liposuction, for excessive male breast growth

Our legal staff is offering free Risperdal case reviews to alleged victims of this drug, and they are available now to fully explain all of your legal rights and options. If you want to hold Johnson & Johnson accountable for the pain and embarrassment caused by Risperdal gynecomastia, please call to arrange for your no-obligation review.

What is Risperdal?

risperdal lawsuitRisperdal (risperidone) is an atypical antipsychotic used to treat a number of psychiatric conditions in both adults and children. However, when it was first launched in 1993, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) had only approved Risperdal to treat adults with schizophrenia. In 2003, the agency expanded Risperdal’s approved indications to include the treatment of adults with bipolar disorder, and in 2006 the medication was approved to treat aggressive behavior in autistic children. A year later, the FDA cleared the use Risperdal for children between the ages of 13 and 17 who exhibited symptoms of schizophrenia, as well as children between 10 and 17 with symptoms of bipolar disorder.

Risperdal is available in tablet form, as orally disintegrating tablets, and as an oral solution. Risperidone is also the active ingredient in a long-acting injection called Risperdal Consta that is administered every two weeks. Risperidone works by affecting the levels of dopamine and serotonin in the brain. These neurotransmitters are known to affect mood and behavior.

Invega, another atypical antipsychotic marketed by Johnson & Johnson and Janssen, is made from an active metabolite of Risperdal. While Invega has the same physiological effects as Risperdal, the body metabolizes it differently.

In addition to their approved indications, Risperdal and Invega are also sometimes used off-label to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety, sleep difficulties and depression .In November 2013, Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay $2.2 million to settle charges levied by the federal government that it improperly marketed certain drugs, including these two antipsychotics. Among other things, the U.S. Department of Justice had accused the company of promoting off-label use of Invega and Risperdal in children, elderly dementia patients, and the mentally disabled.

Risperdal and Gynecomastia

A number studies have suggested that Risperdal may cause male breast growth, a condition known as gynecomastia. One of the earliest reports was published in 1999 in Psychopharmacology, after a patient developed gynecomastia while taking 0.5mg of risperidone in conjunction with fluoxetine (an antidepressant sold under the brand name Paxil). In 2006, a paper that appeared in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology reported that the use of Risperdal in children was associated with elevated levels of prolactin. Prolactin is a hormone that is known to be associated with female breast development and lactation. Three years later, research published in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology revealed that these high levels of prolactin could persist for up to two years.

Gynecomastia is marked by the development of female-like breasts in men and boys. Symptoms of the condition may include:

  • Swollen breast tissue
  • Tenderness in the breast
  • Pain in the breast
  • Nipple discharge from one or both breasts

Risperdal Litigation Involving Male Breast Growth

As of July 2016, more than 1,740 Risperdal lawsuits were pending in a mass tort litigation underway in Pennsylvania’s Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, including hundreds of cases filed on behalf of men and boys who allegedly experienced excessive male breast growth related to their use of the medication. Hundreds of additional Risperdal gynecomastia cases were also pending in other state courts around the U.S.

In October 2012, Bloomberg.com reported that Johnson & Johnson had settled five Pennsylvania gynecomastia lawsuits just before they were scheduled to go to trial. The state’s mass tort program also convened a number of trials in 2015 and 2016, several of which concluded with significant verdicts in favor of plaintiffs and compensatory damage awards ranging from $70 million to $500,000. Pennsylvania and other state courts are scheduled to convene additional Risperdal trials involving male breast growth in the near future.

Learn More about Your Legal Options

Men and boys who  developed male breasts that might be related to the use of Risperdal could be entitled to compensation for the physical, financial, and emotional damages they sustained due to their condition. To learn more about your legal options, please call  to obtain a free, no-obligation case review. Our legal staff will fully explain the issues involved in this litigation, so that you can make the right decision for you and your family.