Risperidone—or Risperdal, as it is known in the pharmaceutical world—is an antipsychotic drug used to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and autism symptoms. This can have great benefits for people with chronic mental health diseases to allow them to live normal lives.
Unfortunately, as with any medication, there are multiple potentially severe side effects associated with Risperdal that can negatively impact the health of patients who take it. While some of these effects can be minor, others can seriously affect your wellbeing.
Specifically, this drug can cause adolescent males to develop breast tissue. This undisclosed side effect is the cause of many lawsuits against the maker of Risperdal, Janssen Pharmaceuticals.
If you or a loved one suffered any kind of undisclosed side effect from using Risperdal that resulted in a significant injury, you have the right to pursue compensation in court. A Risperdal lawyer could help you evaluate the effect of the drug on your body and file a lawsuit designed to hold negligent drug makers responsible for their actions.
Risperdal has been on the market since 1994 and has been approved by the FDA for the immediate treatment of schizophrenia and the long-term treatment of bi-polar disorder. It can be prescribed to both adults and adolescents, some of whom may be as young as 13 years old.
The drug works by rebalancing serotonin and dopamine in the brain to level out the patient’s mood. This helps bring schizophrenics back to a stable frame of mind and helps bipolar patients remain in a steady mental state.
Because of its early development and a lack of competition, Risperdal was the only drug used for this purpose on the market for nine years. Unfortunately, during this time, the drug’s maker engaged in a campaign of deceit to raise their prescription numbers and profits.
The potential side effects of taking Risperdal are well-cataloged. In fact, the FDA warned about the dangers of elderly and child patients using the drug immediately after its release. Unfortunately, this did not stop Janssen Pharmaceuticals from engaging in advertising campaigns to increase the visibility of the drug on the market place. These actions have already resulted in significant settlements with people negatively affected by the drug.
This advertising did not disclose the fact that elderly people taking the drug were dying at an alarming rate, nor did it disclose the extent of young boys developing breast tissue, otherwise known as gynecomastia. Other common and serious side effects included:
Any of these side effects can have a serious effect on the quality and length of a patient’s life. Especially for patients who were prescribed Risperdal while they were a child or elderly, the drug can have a catastrophic effect on a person’s future.
Drug companies are just like all other corporations in that they have a legal responsibility to create products that are reasonably safe for the public to use. Especially in the highly regulated pharmaceutical world, companies are required to ensure that their drugs are reasonably safe and that they properly disclose all potential side effects.
When a company fails to do this, as Janssen Pharmaceuticals did with Risperdal, the company is legally liable for any damage that results. If you took Risperdal and suffered any adverse health effect as a result, you may be able to take your case to court for compensation.
A Risperdal lawyer could help you though this complex process to hold negligent pharmaceutical companies liable for their actions. The time to file a claim is limited, so do not hesitate—contact a Risperdal attorney today to get started on your case.