Risperdal (risperidone) is an antipsychotic approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1993 for the treatment of schizophrenia in adults. In 2006 and 2007, the FDA approved additional uses for Risperdal including schizophrenia in children, bipolar disorder in adults and children and behavioral disorders caused by autism in children.
Two Alabama parents are currently suing the pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson for knowing the dangers of the schizophrenia medication Risperdal five years prior to the corporations admission that it could cause some unusual side effects. They have also been accused by an FDA whistleblower of manipulating data to continue selling the drug. This lawsuit is one out of hundreds awaiting trial for similar damages caused by J&J, specifically this drug.
Among several other side effects known to be caused by Risperdal, it caused growth of significant sized breasts in about 1000 young males. The number of people affected by the drug is much higher than 1000 because theses numbers account for Pennsylvania alone.
It gets more intense; former FDA chief David Kessler testified against Johnson & Johnson in the suit, providing strong evidence to the claims that the corporation actually manipulated data to sell the drug.
Johnson & Johnson some time back agreed to pay $2.2 billion to settle federal claims that it improperly marketed the anti-psychotic drug Risperdal.
It doesn’t exactly make sense that J&J gave the federal government 2.2 billion dollars following the settlement when the US Government is not the victim in this case. We all know how inefficient the government bureaucracy is. These kind of settlements should not be administered by the government, but rather by an independent third party intermediary.
Some details about this case may not be completely clear yet, but as it continues to unfold it will surely give valuable perspective to those paying attention.
Gynecomastia is enlargement or development of breast tissue in males. It is more common and particularly disturbing in children and adolescents. The development of gynecomastia is usually a permanent change that will require surgical removal by a reconstructive surgeon. Gynecomastia has been attributed to Risperdal’s stimulation of prolactin, a hormone common in women who are pregnant or nursing. Adolescents or boys who develop breast tissue suffer not only physical changes but also severe emotional trauma.
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