Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo vs. Glaxo Smithkline Corporation

Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo vs. Glaxo Smithkline Corporation

Suit: Antidepressant is Addictive

A lawsuit contends the manufacturer of the popular anti-depressant Paxil concealed evidence that the drug can be addictive

Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo vs. Glaxo Smithkline Corporation

8/25/2001

Suit: Antidepressant is Addictive

http://dailynews.yahoo.com/htx/ap/20010825/us/paxil_suit_1.html

To learn more, go to http://www.baumhedlundlaw.com

A lawsuit contends the manufacturer of the popular anti-depressant Paxil concealed evidence that the drug can be addictive.

The lawsuit was filed Friday on behalf of 35 people from around the country who say they suffered symptoms ranging from electric-like shocks to suicidal thoughts after discontinuing use of the drug.

The lawsuit, which seeks class-action status and unspecified damages, says GlaxoSmithkline PLC concealed the possibility of physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms from the drug. It alleges fraud, deceit, negligence, liability, and breach of warranty.

There was no immediate comment from the British-based company. Calls to its U.S. offices after business hours Friday were not returned.

Introduced on the U.S. market in 1992, Paxil is the country’s second-largest selling anti-depressant.

Paul Domb, 42, of Miami, said that after he stopped taking Paxil last year, he suffered from convulsions, night sweats, and suicidal thoughts for about six weeks.

He said he thought the problems had to do with recent heart surgery, but after researching his symptoms he concluded they were caused by his withdrawal from Paxil.

“I stopped taking this drug … and it destroyed me. It almost killed me,” he said.

In June, a Wyoming jury awarded $8 million in damages to the family of a man after determining that Paxil caused him to kill his wife, daughter and granddaughter before committing suicide.

Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo vs. Glaxo Smithkline Corporation

Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo vs. Glaxo Smithkline Corporation

Victims File Lawsuit over Severe Withdrawal Reactions from the Antidepressant–PaxilFirst Class Action of its Kind Against an Antidepressant Maker

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo 12100 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 950 Los Angeles, CA 90025

Contact: Robin McCall, Media Relations Day: (800) 827-0087 or (310) 207-3233 Night: (818) 558-5964 Email: RMcCall@BaumHedlundLaw.com

35 people who have suffered from severe withdrawal reactions as a result of taking the antidepressant Paxil, filed a class action complaint today in California Superior Court, LA County, against Glaxo Smithkline Corporation (GSK), formerly known as SmithKline Beecham.

Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo vs. Glaxo Smithkline Corporation

8/24/2001

Victims File Lawsuit over Severe Withdrawal Reactions from the Antidepressant–PaxilFirst Class Action of its Kind Against an Antidepressant Maker

http://www.baumhedlundlaw.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo 12100 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 950 Los Angeles, CA 90025

Contact: Robin McCall, Media Relations Day: (800) 827-0087 or (310) 207-3233 Night: (818) 558-5964 Email: RMcCall@BaumHedlundLaw.com

The lawsuit against the makers of Paxil for the potentially disabling and deadly withdrawal effects associated with Paxil has now been officially filed. This is clearly a suit that should be filed against the makers of all of these serotonergic antidepressants and DEFINITELY one that should have been filed against the makers of the serotonergic diet pills, Fen-Phen and Redux. What a crime it was to drop all of those Fen-Phen and Redux users off “cold turkey” when they were withdrawn forcing so many onto the serotonergic antidepressants creating additional damage and leading them into an additional serotonin nightmare. Why were patients not allowed to withdraw gradually?

All of these companies who put these extremely addictive drugs on the market with no warning of the addictive properties should be held accountable for the results of that lack of warning. The withdrawal from these serotonergic antidepressants, according to the World Health Organization, appears to be even worse than the benzodiazaphines – which already have one of the worst reputations for serious withdrawal. [Use the search engine to find our report on the World Health Organization’s statement that came out this spring.]

When we know that Ecstasy withdrawal can plunge users into the depths of depression we should not be the least bit surprised to learn that any of its chemical cohorts can do the same in withdrawal. All are serotonergic agents -Ecstasy, Prozac, LSD, Zoloft, PCP, Paxil, etc. – with similar effects due to the increase of serotonin and decrease of serotonin metabolism that they produce.

When one understands the steroid effect brought on by an increase in serotonin [one 30mg dose of Prozac DOUBLES cortisol levels!], it is not difficult to see that the initiation of use of these drugs should be very gradual as should the discontinuation be a very gradual process.

Contact information for the attorneys and links to additional information on the lawsuit is all listed in the press release that follows.

Ann Blake-TracyExecutive Director, International Coalition For Drug AwarenessAuthor of Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? – Our Serotonin Nightmare ()

To learn more, go to http://www.baumhedlundlaw.com.

35 people who have suffered from severe withdrawal reactions as a result of taking the antidepressant Paxil, filed a class action complaint today in California Superior Court, LA County, against Glaxo Smithkline Corporation (GSK), formerly known as SmithKline Beecham. This group represents thousands of Paxil users who have allegedly suffered from withdrawal reactions and dependency/withdrawal syndrome. They come from all walks of life (e.g., Lt. Col in the U.S. Air Force; former star athlete; web-designer; children; bank fraud investigator and many more) and reside throughout the United States. Each has experienced similar withdrawal reactions and problems such as: jolting electric “zaps,” dizziness, light-headedness, vertigo, in-coordination, gait disturbances, sweating, extreme nausea, vomiting, high fever, abdominal discomfort, flu symptoms, anorexia, diarrhea, agitation, tremulousness, irritability, aggression, sleep disturbance, nightmares, tremor, confusion, memory and concentration difficulties, lethargy, malaise, weakness, fatigue, paraesthesias, ataxia, and/or myalgia.

Paxil was introduced into the U.S. market on December 29, 1992, and is a well known antidepressant medication in the same class as Zoloft and Prozac (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or “SSRI’s”). Paxil is approved for marketing in the United States for conditions such as depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, panic disorder, and “social anxiety disorder.”

Complaint Allegations: 1) The complaint alleges Paxil can cause some people who take it to experience serious and unexpected withdrawal reactions. Neither the patients nor the physicians expect these withdrawal reactions because, according to the complaint, the manufacturer has deliberately failed to warn of their potential occurrence. Both physician and patient unwittingly commit to Paxil without knowing the drug’s addictive traits. None of the named plaintiffs were ever informed before starting Paxil that it was addictive, induced dependency, or created withdrawal reactions when dosage was reduced or terminated.

2) Paxil creates both physical and psychological dependency because GSK has suppressed the information about the severe withdrawal reactions of its drug, many patients and their physicians are fooled into thinking that the withdrawal reactions are caused by another condition (such as relapse), thus prompting further incorrect and unnecessary medical treatment, including increased dosages of Paxil. 3) GSK has known for years the distinct characteristics of Paxil which make it prone to cause withdrawal reactions when discontinued. While the medical community has acknowledged the potential for all SSRI’s to cause dependency/withdrawal syndrome, Paxil is, by far, the worst. According to World Health Organization (“WHO”) data obtained by the plaintiff class members, Paxil has the highest incidence rate of withdrawal adverse experiences of any antidepressant drug in the world. “Even despite our clients’ extreme difficulties caused by this drug, some remain on Paxil today because they are “hooked” and fear they cannot get off the drug,” says attorney Mary Schiavo.

The complaint charges include fraud and deceit, negligence, strict liability, breach of warranty and implied warranty which can be seen on the complaint.

The lawsuit was filed by Karen Barth (in association with Mary Schiavo) of Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, Guilford & Schiavo in Los Angeles and Donald Farber of San Rafael, California.

The attorneys have stated, “The scariest part about this is that there are people out there trying to get off this drug who are experiencing these horrible withdrawal reactions. They think its because of something wrong with them, when it’s really the Paxil – – and then they take even more and further exacerbate the problem!”

Fact Sheet is available on the web along with the complaint at www.baumhedlundlaw.com

Donald Schell vs. SmithKline Beecham

Donald Schell vs. SmithKline Beecham

Judge Denies Rehearing in Drug Case

Associated Press

A federal judge denied a request by the maker of Paxil for a new trial in the case of a man who killed himself and three family members after taking the anti-depressant drug.
Donald Schell vs. SmithKline Beecham

8/11/2001

Judge Denies Rehearing in Drug Case

http://wire.ap.org/?FRONTID=HOME&SITE=CALOS&enter=Go

Associated Press

GlaxoSmithKline asked that they be granted a new trial in the case of the murder/suicide where the family was awarded $8 million for the deaths of four members of the Donald Schell family and the Tim Tobin family. They tried to say that Dr. David Healy who testified as an expert for the Schell and Tobin families contradicted himself in the trial. (Wow! I wonder if he looked at someone cross-eyed too?! Talk about grasping for straws!)

On Thursday Federal Judge William Beaman turned down their request stating that “the verdict was supported by reliable scientific data and that jury instructions were proper.”

Obviously GlaxoSmithKline has not been as successful at buying the verdict they desired as Lilly was in the Wesbecker murder/suicide case in Kentucky. But they assure us that they will not give up as yet. They will now head for Denver to see what they can accomplish there.

You see, as long as they can put up a strong front, they can postpone the inevitable landslide of future lawsuits against their “golden goose.” The stalling pays off in another way as well with every day bringing in another $7 million or so in profits on Paxil. It all comes back to $$$$$. Clearly loss of human life is not what matters to GlaxoSmithKline or Lilly, or Pfizer, or Solvay, etc., etc., etc.

Ann Blake-Tracy, Executive DirectorInternational Coalition For Drug AwarenessAuthor of Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? – Our Serotonin Nightmare July 2001 Edition – (1-)

A federal judge denied a request by the maker of Paxil for a new trial in the case of a man who killed himself and three family members after taking the anti-depressant drug.

In June, a jury determined that taking Paxil prompted Donald Schell to kill his wife, daughter, granddaughter and himself in 1998. It awarded $8 million in damages to Schell’s relatives.

Jurors returned the verdict in a civil wrongful death suit against SmithKline Beecham, the manufacturer of Paxil, the country’s second-largest selling anti-depressant. The company is now called GlaxoSmithKline PLC.

Attorneys for the company had asked U.S. Magistrate Judge William C. Beaman to overturn the jury award or allow a retrial.

The company must pay $6.4 million of the $8 million total, because the jury ruled that it was 80 percent responsible for the deaths, while Schell was 20 percent liable.

The company’s request was based in part on what it called the unreliability of the plaintiffs’ expert witness, Dr. David Healy, saying his testimony contradicted what he wrote in professional articles.

Beaman turned down the request Thursday, saying the verdict was supported by reliable scientific data and that jury instructions were proper.

GlaxoSmithKline will appeal to the U.S. 10th Circuit Court in Denver, attorney Tom Gorman said.

Donald Schell vs. SmithKline Beecham

Donald Schell vs. SmithKline Beecham

Paxil Maker Ordered to Pay $8 Million – Jury Says Anti-depressant Largely to Blame for Deadly Shooting Spree

The Associated Press

The manufacturer of the nation’s second-best-selling anti-depressant must pay $8 million to the relatives of a man who killed himself and three others after taking the drug Paxil, jurors said.

Donald Schell vs. SmithKline Beecham

6/6/2001

Paxil Maker Ordered to Pay $8 Million – Jury Says Anti-depressant Largely to Blame for Deadly Shooting Spree

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/living/dailynews/paxil010606.html
The Associated Press

The manufacturer of the nation’s second-best-selling anti-depressant must pay $8 million to the relatives of a man who killed himself and three others after taking the drug Paxil, jurors said.

Jurors in U.S. District Court considering the wrongful death civil suit returned a verdict against SmithKline Beecham today. They received the case Tuesday afternoon. Relatives of Donald Schell, 60, claim the man, originally from Gillette, Wyo., took two Paxil tablets before shooting his wife, their daughter, his granddaughter and himself to death on Feb. 13, 1998.

The survivors’ lead attorney, Andy Vickery, had asked the jury to award a total of $25 million in damages.

Besides Schell, the victims were his wife, Rita Schell, 55; their daughter, Deborah Tobin, 31; and Alyssa Tobin, 9 months. Tobin’s widower, Tim Tobin, and Donald Schell’s sister, Neva Hardy, filed the wrongful-death lawsuit.

Vickery also asked the jury to award damages to Michael Schell, the Schells’ adult son, and to Rita Schell’s mother.

The jury awarded damages in varied amounts for each death, with the largest awards $2.5 million each for the deaths of Deborah and Alyssa Tobin going to Tim Tobin.

Jury Said Drug Maker 80 Percent to Blame

In its findings, the jury concluded that Paxil could cause someone to commit suicide or homicide and that the drug was in fact a proximate cause of the deaths in this case.

The jury attributed 80 percent of the fault in the case to the drug maker and 20 percent to Donald Schell.

A call seeking comment from representatives of the drug company was not immediately returned today.

In closing arguments, Vickery said Paxil can produce suicidal and homicidal reactions in a small number of people.

“Since 1990, SmithKline Beecham knew there was a small group at risk and Don Schell was one of those vulnerable people,” he said.

The company, now GlaxoSmithKline PLC, failed to provide adequate label warnings about the possibility of violent reactions, nor did it adequately test for the risk of such reactions, he said.

Company: Drug Didn’t Have a Chance to Work

Attorneys for the company maintained that Paxil is a safe treatment for depression.

“It’s plain from the facts, science and common sense,” Charles Preuss said in closing arguments. “Don Schell’s escalating depression caused this.

“The real tragedy is Paxil didn’t have a chance to do its job and save lives,” he said. “Paxil could have saved four lives in Gillette.”

Vickery said Schell told people he hallucinated when he took Prozac a decade earlier. Preuss said Schell went through five previous bouts of depression that kept him out of work, but Schell did not follow the recommendations of at least three psychiatrists.

Also, he said, Schell had been coping with the death of his father-in-law and brother and had problems at work regarding a threatened lawsuit.

Doctors from across the United States and from England were called to testify during the 2 1&Mac218;2-week trial.

Central nervous system drugs like Paxil are GlaxoSmithKline’s biggest product group. GlaxoSmithKline’s world headquarters are in London and its U.S. research operations are based in Philadelphia.

Copyright 2001 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

07/19/1999 – My antidepressant made me do it! – Hartman estate says

The following article makes its first appearance today (7/19/99) on
salon.com:

My antidepressant made me do it!
The Hartman estate says Zoloft was to blame for a murder-suicide.
By Rob Waters

(http://www.salon.com/health/feature/1999/07/19/zoloft/index.html)

My antidepressant made me do it!

The Hartman estate says Zoloft was
to blame for a murder-suicide.

– – – – – – – – – – – –
By Rob Waters

July 19, 1999 | It was May 1998, and comedian Phil Hartman and his wife, Brynn, were planning a party. Their son, Sean, was soon turning 10 and they wanted to make it special with a bash at Planet Hollywood. Brynn was inviting her son’s friends, including some of his classmates from his school in Encino.

In mid-May she called Kathryn Alice, the mother of one of Sean’s friends, to get her address. Sean and Calvin, Kathryn’s son, played together and had visited each other’s homes. Through their sons, the moms had gotten to know each other, too. They chatted on the phone, and Brynn confided that things were tough. “She said she was barely hanging on by a thread,” Alice recalls. “I told her things will get better, but she said ‘I don’t know.'”

The invitation soon arrived in the mail, but the birthday party never happened. On May 28, at about 2:30 a.m., Brynn Hartman returned home from a night out with a female friend. As Sean and his sister, Birgen, slept in their rooms, Brynn entered the master bedroom and shot her sleeping husband three times. Four hours later, with police in the house and friends listening outside, Brynn lay down on the bed next to Phil’s body and pulled the trigger once more, killing herself.

How could this happen? Why did a woman who was, by all accounts, a devoted and protective mother, deprive her children of their parents? In the days after the killings, the tabloids and mainstream press ruminated over the problems in the couple’s often stormy relationship, speculating that Phil was preparing to leave her, or that she had relapsed into an old cocaine addiction. People magazine reported that she had recently started drinking again after 10 years of near-sobriety and had checked into an Arizona rehab clinic earlier in the year. Indeed, toxicology reports cited in press accounts indicate that at the time she died, Brynn Hartman had both cocaine and alcohol in her system.

But the couple’s family and their lawyers have another answer: Zoloft made her do it.

In late May 1999, one year after the deaths, attorneys for the Hartmans’ estate and children filed a lawsuit against Pfizer, the pharmaceutical giant that makes Zoloft, a new-generation antidepressant similar to Prozac. The suit contends that Brynn Hartman’s violent outburst was caused by a rare but previously documented side effect of the medication that left her agitated, jittery and “out of touch with reality.” It is one of more than 170 wrongful death lawsuits filed against the makers of these new antidepressants since Prozac first hit the market 12 years ago.

The Hartman suit also charges that Arthur Sorosky, the psychiatrist that supplied Brynn Hartman with Zoloft, was not really her doctor and never conducted an evaluation. Sorosky, the complaint alleges, was actually her son Sean’s doctor and gave Brynn medication samples — the kind doled out to physicians by drug company salesmen — “without the benefit of a history and physical examination [or] diagnosis.”

Sorosky’s attorney, Joel Douglas, told Salon Health that his client and Brynn Hartman had “a doctor-patient relationship” and that Sorosky had prescribed the Zoloft in a proper and appropriate way. “From what I understand,” he added, “with cocaine and alcohol in her system, you don’t need to look for Zoloft to understand what happened.”

Original report on murder/suicide: http://www.cnn.com/SHOWBIZ/TV/9805/28/hartman/

Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil Antidepressant Users vs Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline

Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil Antidepressant Users vs Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline

Commonly-Prescribed Antidepressants Are Extremely Dangerous for Some

ClassActionAmerican.com

Some 200 legal actions have been filed against Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturers of Prozac (fluoxetine), Zoloft (sertraline), and Paxil (paroxetine), respectively, to recover for suicides or homicides.
rozac, Zoloft, and Paxil Antidepressant Users v Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline

1/1/1998

Commonly-Prescribed Antidepressants Are Extremely Dangerous for Some

http://www.classactionamerica.com/cases/case.asp?cid=1087

ClassActionAmerican.com

Some 200 legal actions have been filed against Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturers of Prozac (fluoxetine), Zoloft (sertraline), and Paxil (paroxetine), respectively, to recover for suicides or homicides–some completed, some only attempted–by patients in the first few days or weeks after they were prescribed one of these drugs. These three medications are in the same family, called SSRIs, for selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. They are commonly prescribed for depression, and they work by increasing the amount of a chemical called serotonin in the brain.