NOTE FROM Ann Blake-Tracy:
Excellent article! Many would still be alive and many more
would have avoided being damaged had they been able to see this coming as
clearly as I did years ago when I began warning about these drugs. But it is not
over! There will tragically be many more losses due to the ability of drug
manufacturers to buy the silence this doctor from Tufts says below should
not happen. These settlements need to be made public!
The one glaring omission in this article is a case I am very
familiar with Tobin vs Glaxo. This Paxil-induced murder/suicide
case was allowed to go to court, rather than being settled by Glaxo.
And after hearing all the evidence the jury ruled
that it was clear that Paxil was the main cause of this tragic
murder/suicide that cost 4 lives in one WY family. They ordered Glaxo to pay
$6.3 Million – in my opinion a very small amount for four lives!
But it will not be the end of these types of cases being filed.
The authors did not figure the losses Glaxo will face from those cases
of murder/suicide so their losses could be far greater than detailed
The company hasn’t specified in regulatory filings
the number of suicide, birth-defect and addiction cases settled.
“It’s important to disclose such settlements because
it raises the red flag for both doctors and patients that there might be a
problem,” said Dan Carlat, a psychiatrist at Tufts University School of Medicine
in Boston who writes and edits a blog and a monthly
Report. “It would motivate
doctors to dig into the literature even more before prescribing these
- About 450 suicide-related Paxil cases were settled. Only about a dozen
haven’t been, the people said. The $1 billion total doesn’t include more than
600 claims that Paxil caused birth defects.
- A Philadelphia jury on Oct. 13 found the drugmaker should pay $2.5 million
to the family of Lyam Kilker, a 3-year-old boy born with a heart defect after
his mother took Paxil while pregnant. Based on that outcome, an analyst
estimated the company may potentially face additional verdicts in birth-defect
cases waiting to be tried in Pennsylvania.
- 600 More Cases
- “A liability totaling $1.5 billion is possible,” wrote Savvas Neophytou, a
Panmure Gordon analyst in London, in a note to investors the day after the
- In comparison, Pfizer Inc., parent of Wyeth, the maker of diet-drug
combination fen-phen, has had to set aside about $21 billion to resolve about
200,000 personal-injury claims over that medicine. Merck & Co. agreed to
pay $4.85 billion to resolve more than 48,000 claims over the withdrawn
- Harris Pogust, an
attorney for Paxil plaintiffs, couldn’t confirm the total. He said the amounts
- The suicide settlements included a suit over the death of a 14-year-old
boy who had been taking Paxil for two months. The parents of Scott Cunningham,
of Valparaiso, Indiana, sued after the boy hung himself in 2001. They alleged
Glaxo suppressed evidence that Paxil use was linked to the risk of suicide
attempts by adolescents. Glaxo denied the allegations, according to court
- The family settled its suit in May, according to court filings. Family
attorney Bijan Esfandiari confirmed the settlement, saying the amount was
- About 150 cases over suicides by Paxil users were settled for an average
of about $2 million, and about 300 over suicide attempts settled for an
average of $300,000, they said. Some of the claims were resolved before suits
were filed, according to the people familiar with the matter.
- Glaxo has settled about 10 birth-defect cases, Sean Tracey, a
Houston-based lawyer who represented the family of a child victim, said in
court Dec. 2. The settlements averaged about $4 million, the people familiar
with the cases said.
- Glaxo paid an average of about $50,000 per case to resolve about 3,200
claims linking Paxil to addiction problems, the people familiar with the cases
- In its 2008 annual report, company officials noted they had reached a
“conditional settlement agreement” in January 2006 with Paxil users who
alleged they suffered withdrawal symptoms after taking the drug. The case,
filed in Los Angeles federal court, was marked closed in court records in
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