Product News and Recalls

Pfizer Settles Lawsuits over Dopamine Drugs

pfizer settles dopamine lawsuitsThe pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has settled a class-action lawsuit claiming the company did not adequately warn patients of the potential health risks posed by its dopamine drugs Cabaser and Dostinex. According to the FiercePharma article, Pfizer reached a multi-million dollar confidential settlement with 172 patients in an Australian court.

Plaintiffs in the class-action lawsuit claimed that Pfizer’s Cabaser and Dostinex caused them to develop previously nonexistent addictions to activities such as gambling, shopping, and sex. The drugs were taken between 1996 and 2010 to reduce tremors caused by Parkinson’s disease and restless leg syndrome.

Lawsuits filed over drug side effects with insufficient warnings are nothing new for Pfizer. The New York–based company is currently handling lawsuits over its cholesterol-lowering medication, Lipitor. Lipitor lawsuits filed on behalf of women who developed diabetes began mounting in 2013, after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) required in 2012 that statins like Lipitor carry labels warning about elevated blood-sugar levels and increased risk of diabetes. The announcement came after several studies found that women who used cholesterol-lowering statins like Lipitor and Crestor were significantly more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes. In February 2014, with roughly 500 Lipitor lawsuits filed, the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation moved to consolidate the lawsuits.

Pfizer also faces lawsuits over its popular antidepressant medication Zoloft. Zoloft belongs to a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). SSRIs are often prescribed to help treat depression, anxiety, bulimia, and obsessive-compulsive behavior. However, numerous studies have linked SSRIs like Zoloft to serious heart and lung birth defects in children. One study reported that women who took a certain SSRI during the first trimester of pregnancy were two times more likely to give birth to children with heart defects. In another study, researchers concluded that children whose mothers took an SSRI during the first three months of pregnancy had a 50 percent increased risk of developing a heart defect.

Consult your health care provider whenever seeking to make changes to your treatment plan. If you or a loved one was diagnosed with diabetes after taking Lipitor or had a child born with birth defects after using Zoloft, contact the pharmaceutical attorneys at Lopez McHugh now for a free legal consultation. You may be eligible to receive compensation through a Lipitor or Zoloft lawsuit.