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Accutane IBD Plaintiffs Awarded $18 Million, Roche to Appeal

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Atlantic City, NJIs $9 million enough to compensate for a lifetime of suffering with Accutane inflammatory bowel disease? That's what one jury in Atlantic City thought was fair, when it awarded $9 million each to two plaintiffs who claimed the Accutane they used was responsible for triggering their Accutane IBD.

Kathleen Rossitto and Riley Wilkinson were identified as the plaintiffs harmed by the drug, according to Bloomberg News (6/29/12). Their victory in court was the 9th win for plaintiffs out of 13 lawsuits brought against Roche, the manufacturer of Accutane. Roche signaled they would be appealing the combined $18 million verdict.

Accutane is a powerful drug used to treat serious acne, and has been favored by millions around the world for its effectiveness against the ravages of acne since it first appeared in 1982. Roche has since pulled Accutane from the US market due, the manufacturer said at the time, to costs stemming from lawsuits and not from side effects that can include Accutane Ulcerative Colitis and Accutane Chron's Disease.

The verdict in the Rossitto and Wilkinson case came about a week after the European Medicines Agency (EMA), on June 21, announced that in the regulator's view Roche systematically dropped the ball in the evaluation of reports suggesting safety issues involving its products—and whether those reports should have been passed on to the requisite health authorities.

While the EMA noted that it had found no direct evidence that patients were harmed due to deficiencies in Roche's drug safety reporting, the regulator nonetheless uncovered some 80,000 reports of Accutane side effects stemming from the US market that had not been evaluated, and thus had not been passed on to the EMA.

An attorney representing Kathleen Rossitto and Riley Wilkinson described their injuries as "horrible" in a statement following the verdict.

Accutane acne medication has been used by upwards of 16 million people worldwide. Many have suffered Accutane side effects as a result. Those side effects have included, but are not limited to Accutane colitis.

Various plaintiffs, say Accutane attorneys, have suffered job loss and faced irreversible lifestyle changes as the result of becoming sick from Accutane. Adverse reactions such as the development of Accutane IBD is very painful for the patient, from which there is little relief. Roche is based in Switzerland.

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