Pharmaceutical companies have been paying doctors to promote their antipsychotic drugs for years, according to hundreds of Risperdal lawsuit filings, in a trade-off that may have harmed poor and foster children the most.

A recent report from the Denver Post indicates that foster children in Colorado were 12 times more likely to be given an antipsychotic drug in 2012 than others on Medicaid. Multidrug prescriptions and dosages were also higher for that demographic, the investigation found, in contrast to medications prescribed to non-foster children. Nine out of the ten most commonly-prescribed drugs to foster children were psychotropics, while just one medication part of this class was included on Medicaid’s list of most-used medications. According the article, a 2009 U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee study found that 1 million children in America take antipsychotics each year, tens of thousands of which are 5 years old or younger.

To put those figures in perspective, the Denver Post referenced a whistleblower lawsuit from 2012 between GlaxoSmithKline, the company that markets Paxil, and one of its former employees who says he turned down free tickets to sports games and other incentives to market the medication to children. He was written up for not being a “team player,” according to his lawsuit, which resulted in a $3 billion settlement with the U.S. government.

J&J Agrees to Pay $2.2 Billion in Risperdal Settlement

In November 2013, Johnson and Johnson was accused of such behavior by the U.S. Department of Justice, who led a 10-year probe into the company’s marketing of Risperdal and other drugs. The company paid $2.2 billion to settle claims that it promoted the medication for uses not approved by the FDA, including the treatment of children before it was cleared to do so in 2006, and in elderly patients with dementia.

Johnson & Johnson and Janssen were also accused of concealing certain side effect information about Risperdal and other products from the general public. According to claims filed in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas in Pennsylvania, patients taking this medication may develop gynecomastia, condition categorized by male breast development, and other complications. More than 200 Risperdal lawsuits have now been filed in the consolidated Pennsylvania litigation, court documents indicate.

File a Risperdal Lawsuit with our Firm Today

If you were prescribed this powerful anti-psychotic medication, contact our Firm today to learn more about Risperdal lawsuits. Call us now at (877) 779-1414.

Published April 14, 2014 by