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The antipsychotic drug Risperdal has been known to cause gynecomastia (breast growth) and galactorrhea (lactation). If you, or a loved one, have suffered from breast growth due to the use of Risperdal, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact a Phillips Dayes attorney by filling out the form on this page, or by calling 1-800-917-4000. Dangerous drug attorneys are ready to do your free initial consultation.

Before the drug chlorpromazine became available in 1951, mental illness did not have a set method of treatment. However, this antipsychotic drug helped to pave the way for the developments to come over the next half century. Since the 1950’s science has discovered that there are 2 receptors in the brain that become overloaded, by using typical and atypicalantipsychotics these receptors can be blocked, helping the patient to think more clearly.

Atypical Antipsychotic Drugs

The atypical antipsychotic market is growing quickly. While typical antipsychotics will block dopamine receptors, atypical antipsychotics will block both dopamine and serotonin receptors. The result is that the patient who is suffering from schizophrenia or bipolar disorder will be able to think more clearly, with fewer side effects (than if he or she was taking a first generation, or typical, antipsychotic). Since the 1970’s, there have been 11 of these second generation, or atypical, antipsychotic drugs. Brand name is listed with the drug in parentheses.

  • Abilify (Aripiprazole)
  • Clozaril (Clozapine)
  • Fanapt (Iloperidone)
  • Geodon (Ziprasidone)
  • Invega (Paliperidone)
  • Latuda (Lurasidone)
  • Risperdal (Risperidone)
  • Saphris (Asenapine Maleate)
  • Seroquel (Quetiapine)
  • Symbyax (Olanzapine/Fluxetine)
  • Zyprexa (Olanzapine)

The first of the atypical antipsychotics to be developed was Clorazil. It found its way to the market in 1971, and was highly effective. Yet it had a side effect of lowering white blood cell count, and was all but discontinued in 1975.

The majority of these drugs entered the scene in the 1990’s after Janssen Pharmaceuticals (a research division of Johnson & Johnson) developed the drug Risperdal. The sudden influx of medication that worked on mental illness boomed. By 2001, there were 28 million prescriptions written for atypical antipsychotics. Just 10 years later, that number had nearly doubled to 54 million. As the FDA approves these drugs for the treatment of more illnesses, the number of prescriptions continues to increase. For instance, Risperdal was approved to treat schizophrenia in adults in 1993. In 2003, it was approved to treat bipolar disorder. And in 2007 it was approved to treat schizophrenia in youth ages 10-17.

Sales of Antipsychotics

As the number of prescriptions increases, so does the amount of money those drugs are bringing in. As a whole the antipsychotic drug industry, both typical and atypical, brings in over $14 billion per year. In fact, some of the atypical antipsychotics, such as Risperdal, Seroquel, and Abilify, are the best selling drugs in America. Risperdal alone has brought in billions of dollars to its parent company, pulling in $4.5 billion in its peak year alone. But those profits come at a hefty price to the people using the drugs.

Risperdal Side Effects

Whenever a new drug comes out, the manufacturer has an obligation to disclose the side effects discovered during testing. In order to sell the drug, however, these side effects are often minimized, and in some cases passed over completely. Johnson & Johnson has been under fire recently as the plaintiffs allege that the company knew that the drug could cause gynecomastia, especially among young males taking the drug. This painful process of growing breasts has devastating effects on the mental health of the patient, and often requires surgery to correct.

Contact Phillips Dayes

Attorneys at the understand these lawsuits, and they understand what it takes to make a claim against Johnson & Johnson. If you, or a loved one, have suffered from gynecomastia as a result of taking Risperdal, you may be entitled to compensation. Fill out the contact form on this page, or call 1-800-917-4000 to schedule your free initial consultation.

The highly trained lawyers at Phillips Dayes can work with clients in all 50 states.

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