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Zofran MDL Lawsuits Top 200 Total

The number of lawsuits in the Zofran birth defect multidistrict litigation has grown from 15 at the time of consolidation to more than 200 total cases.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - The number of Zofran lawsuits included in the MDL proceedings against Defendant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has grown to more than 200. This number is a large rise from the 15 original lawsuits that were included in the motion to transfer that was approved by the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation in October. The lawsuits are expected to continue to rise, as the number of districts the litigation is originating from is also growing as the news of the possible serious side effects of Zofran spreads throughout the country.

The lawsuits, which have comes from more than a dozen states around the country, claim that GSK knew of the potential risks involved with their Zofran medication as it related to unborn babies but failed to affix a warning label to the bottles. This was only part of the issue however, as plaintiffs also took issue with the manufacturer's penchant for promoting off-label marketing to support the drug. The off-label marketing alleged by the plaintiffs occurs when a drug company encourages the prescription of a particular rug for uses that have not been approved by the FDA.

These off-label prescriptions are often sought by drug companies because it allows them to sell a drug without having to go through the FDA's stringent testing requirements. This allows a company such as GSk to advise doctors to prescribe Zofran to pregnant mothers to combat morning sickness without having the drug tested for that specific cause. That testing is important however, as the dangers that some drugs can pose necessitate that screening process to prevent what many have claimed happened wit Zofran.

Mothers across the nation have claimed that their children are being born with heart defects, club foot, malfunctioning organs, and a host of additional complications as a result of being prescribed Zofran while pregnant. The drug was intended to be used as an anti-nausea remedy for patients recovering from surgery or following chemotherapy treatments. However, because of off-labeling measures used by GSK, plaintiffs claim that their children were put at risk of unknown side effects that have taken the form of serious and sometimes fatal birth defects.

GSK has had a history of marketing drugs off-label to patients, and settled with the Department of Justice in 2012 for $3 billion that brought to an end a number of charges against the company including many off-label marketing claims. More than two decades of studies have been produced by medical journals, universities and newspaper that have found the increased risk of birth defects relate to Zofran can jump up to 30 percent when the drug is prescribed in the first trimester. The birth defects range from heart deformities, kidney failure, cleft lip, and a number of other serious problems allegedly caused by a fetus' exposure to Zofran in the womb.

The lawsuits were consolidated into multidistrict litigation in October with a motion to transfer that only included 12 separate lawsuits. Since that time, 100 additional suits have been filed with many more expected to be added in the coming weeks and months. The MDL is based in the District of Massachusetts federal court in Boston.

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Onder, Shelton, O'Leary & Peterson, LLC is a St. Louis personal injury law firm handling serious injury and death claims across the country. Its mission is the pursuit of justice, no matter how complex the case or strenuous the effort. Onder, Shelton, O'Leary & Peterson has represented clients throughout the United States in pharmaceutical and medical device litigation such as Pradaxa, Lexapro and Yasmin/Yaz, where the firm's attorneys held significant leadership roles in the litigation, as well as Actos, DePuy, Risperdal and others, and other law firms throughout the nation often seek its experience and expertise on complex litigation.