A Fort Meyers, Florida man has spent the past nine years in litigation against Forest Laboratories. Brett Bennett originally filed a lawsuit in 2006 claiming the drug manufacturer’s anti-depressant, Lexapro, was responsible for the death of his wife, who committed suicide after a short time taking the drug.
Brett Bennett is suing Forest Laboratories for product liability and failure to warn. He claimed that they not only made and sold a defective product, but they also failed to warn consumers about the increased risk of suicide.
After Lexapro was released in 2002, the FDA required manufacturers of anti-depressants, more specifically selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI’s), to include additional warnings about the risk of increased depression and suicide risk. Two years later, the FDA required some anti-depressants to include “black box warnings” about the increased risk of suicide.
Doctors are now warning their patients that anti-depressants may cause their depression to worsen. Studies have shown that children, teenagers, and young adults are at an increased risk of suicide while taking anti-depressants like Lexapro.
Although Forest Laboratories claimed they couldn’t have changed Lexapro warning labels before the FDA advised them to, the judge disagreed stating that Forest was free to participate in the process that allows drug manufacturers to change labels when necessary without the FDA’s approval. The judge found that drug makers have a duty to recommend stronger warning labels if side effects can be life threatening. Further, Forest Laboratories failed to prove that it contacted the FDA about stronger warning labels for Lexapro, and the drug manufacturer could not produce evidence that the FDA would have rejected any proposed stronger warning labels.
The judge’s order made it clear that Forest Laboratories would not be able to run from lawsuits filed by consumers whose lives were seriously affected by the drug, Lexapro. Mr. Bennett’s claims are still in litigation, and many individuals and families suffering from Lexapro side effects have the right to compensation for their pain and lost wages.
Lexapro Birth Defect Lawsuits
Suicide is just one of the numerous side effects associated with Lexapro. Hundreds of parents have filed Lexapro lawsuits across the United States. These parents are fighting on behalf of their children who were born with severe birth defect injuries.
Lexapro birth defects include:
- Abnormal neural behavior
- Respiratory distress
- Persistent pulmonary hypertension (PPH)
- Heart defects
- Limb defects
- Cleft lip or palate
- Cranial defects
- Club foot
- Spina bifida
The lawsuits are claiming that Forest Laboratories illegally marketed Lexapro to pregnant women when they knew studies indicated that anti-depressants, like Lexapro, were twice as likely to cause birth defects in women who took the drugs in the second half of their pregnancies.
Companies like Forest Laboratories are being held accountable for their desire to place profits ahead of patient safety. It is important to note that the FDA generally does not perform any of its own independent testing, but the simply review data submitted to to them by companies wanting drugs approved. Often, these companies will hide negative test results and data in order to get their drug approved. This unethical process places innocent people in harms way so a corporation can increase profits.
You have the right to file a lawsuit if Lexapro has harmed you or your child.
Our St. Louis Lexapro lawyers are currently evaluating cases across the entire United States. Hiring a Lexapro birth defect lawyer costs you absolutely nothing. If our lawyers find you have a valid Lexapro case, we take it on a percentage contingency basis. If you do not win your Lexapro lawsuit, we do not get paid or take a fee. To contact a St. Louis Lexapro lawyer, call 855-552-2337. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for a FREE case evaluation and consultation.
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