As a YAZ, Yasmin and Ocella deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism attorney I am poviding this update to the status of YAZ settlements. According to some experts, Bayer Pharmaceutical company the manufacturer of Yaz or Yasmin birth control pills, will end up paying more than $2 billion to settle lawsuits.
Bloomberg reported on July 31st that Bayer has settled nearly 1900 Yaz lawsuits for more than $400 million, at an average of around $212,000. Bayer has more than doubled its reserves for settling these cases to over $610 million, which could be positive news for those affected by the drug who have yet to file a claim.
These lawsuits were filed by users of Yaz or Yasmin birth control pills who suffered venous thrombo-embolic blood clot injuries, such as a pulmonary embolism and or deep vein thrombosis. Since 2009, the German drugmaker has faced a wave of litigation over the birth-control pills. Lawyers suing the company cited FDA reports of at least 50 deaths tied to the pills from 2004 to 2008.
Bayer Under Fire
According to Bayer’s 2nd quarter stockholders newsletter, the drug maker faces about 12,325 lawsuits brought by 13,530 claimant injuries allegedly caused by side effects of Yaz and Yasmin. Bayer reports that they have agreed to pay $402.6 million to resolve approximately 1,877 cases. Drug-industry analysts, such as JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Richard Vosser, have said Bayer may have to pay more than 2 billion euros to resolve all the cases over the pills.
FDA Stronger Warnings
In April, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ordered Bayer and other contraceptive makers to strengthen blood-clot warnings on their products. Pills like Bayer’s Yasmin, which contain a synthetic hormone called drospirenone, will have warning labels saying researchers found they may triple the risk for clots. The FDA examined data on more than 835,000 women who took pills containing drospirenone, including Bayer’s Yasmin line, according to the FDA report.
The Institute for Safe Medicine Practices’ QuarterWatch released a study on May 31, 2012 which ranked Yaz and Yasmin as the second-worst drugs in 2011 for the number of complications reported to the FDA, with more than 8,000 total side effect complaints.
Bayer only settling Pulmonary Embolism, Deep Vein Thrombosis
At this time, Bayer is only settling lawsuits that allege a pulmonary embolism or deep vein thrombosis (DVT) venous clot injuries.
What is a DVT or Pulmonary Embolism?
A DVT involves a blood clot that occurs in the deep veins of the legs or pelvis. A pulmonary embolism occurs when a blood clot breaks off, travels through the blood stream and becomes lodged near the lung.
Yaz and Yasmin MDL Lawsuits
The federal litigation over Yaz and Yasmin is currently consolidated for pretrial proceedings before U.S. District Judge David R. Herndon in the Southern District of Illinois as part of an MDL, or multidistrict litigation. The Yaz and Yasmin MDL has recently grown to become the largest pending litigation in the federal court system.
The case is In re Yasmin and Yaz (Drospirenone) Marketing, Sales Practices and Product Liability Litigation, 09-md-02100, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois (East St. Louis).