Recent studies linking compulsive gambling to Abilify have triggered lawsuits across the country. A FDA report showed that from 2005 to 2013, at least 54 compulsive behaviors were reported by patients, including 30 reports of compulsive gambling.
Reports of compulsive gambling have since been on the rise – more than 29 reports were made to the FDA in 2014 alone.
In January 2016, Sean Brazil, a former Abilify user, filed a lawsuit against Bristol-Myers Squibb in New York federal court. Brazil says he developed a compulsive disorder problem after taking the antipsychotic drug Abilify and that U.S. users weren’t warned about the risk of compulsive gambling. Brazil began taking Abilify in 2004 and soon after that began compulsively gambling. The compulsive gambling continued until nearly a decade later when he was taken off Abilify.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., the makers of Abilify, warned consumers in Canada and Europe that compulsive gambling is a potential side effect. However, the drug makers failed to warn or educate users in the U.S. about the side effect, according to Brazil’s lawsuit.
“Defendants had, or should have, knowledge that Abilify can cause compulsive behaviors like gambling,” Sean Brazil’s lawsuit states. “Despite their significant collective resources, and signals that Abilify is associated with compulsive behaviors such as gambling, defendants have failed to fully and adequately test or research Abilify and its association with compulsive behaviors to the detriment of plaintiff, Abilify users, the public, the medical community, and prescribing doctors.”
The European government in 2012 began requiring Bristol-Myers and Otsuka to warn about the risk of compulsive gambling and to warn patients without a history of gambling that they could develop compulsive gambling.
The Canadian government followed its European counterpart and in November 2015 required the drug maker to add additional warnings. Canadian regulators now require the drug maker to include warnings about the risk of uncontrollable gambling and hypersexuality.
Sean Brazil claims he has lost more than $50,000 gambling during the 10 years he was on Abilify. If you or a loved one has lost more than $50,000 from gambling since taking Abilify, contact our office to see if you qualify to file a lawsuit against the makers of Abilify. Our office handles Abilify lawsuits across the country.