The federal judge overseeing the thousands of Yaz, Yasmin and Ocella venous thrombo-embolism lawsuits, has delayed the first trial scheduled to begin January 9th. The Court ordered the parties to meet with a special mediator in an attempt to negotiate a settlement for the litigation.
The first Yaz trial was involved a plaintiff who suffered a pulmonary embolism after taking the birth control pill.
Judge Herndon issued the order December 31 and determined that the litigation will be better served by delaying the start of the bellwether trial. This trial was designed to help the parties gauge how juries are likely to respond to evidence that will be presented in many of the cases.
Experienced Mediator Appointed
Professor Stephen Saltzburg of George Washington School of Law was appointed to serve as Special Master for purposes of mediating the entire litigation.
Scope of the YAZ Problem
Over 10,500 women have filed a product liability lawsuit against Bayer alleging that they suffered injuries as a result of the drug maker’s failure to adequately warn about the side effects of Yaz, Yasmin and other drosperinone-based birth control pills.
Is Drospirenone the Culprit?
Drospirenone is a new type of synthetic progestin that is used in combination oral contraceptives pills that includes estrogen. Berlex Laboratories originally manufactured Yasmin. Berlex was acquired by Bayer Healthcare, and newer version of Yasmin was manufactured called Yaz.
Recently, Bayer introduced a third version, called Beyaz, which includes a folate supplement. There are several generic versions of Yaz and Yasmin include Ocella, Gianvi, Loryna, Safyral, Syeda and Zarah.
Medical Studies Reveal the Problem
Several medical studies have found that women using Yaz face an increased risk of suffering a blood clot, stroke, pulmonary embolism (PE), deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and sudden death, a condition known as Venous Thrombo- Embolism (VTE).
FDA Now Involved
The FDA recently released a report that suggested drospirenone-based birth control pills may increase the risk of blood clots by 75% over older birth control pills.
A panel of FDA advisors which met in December called for stricter label warnings on Yaz and Yasmin, but stopped short of recommending a Yaz recall.
All federal Yaz and Yasmin lawsuits have been consolidated as part of an MDL, or multidistrict litigation, which is centralized before Judge Herndon in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois.
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