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Motrin Case Similar to Ketek SJS Link

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Philadelphia, PAA Pennsylvania jury's ruling that Johnson & Johnson must pay $10 million in damages to the family of a girl who suffered severe side effects from taking Children's Motrin is similar to a previous case involving Ketek and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome.

Bloomberg reports that the jurors in the Motrin case decided that Johnson & Johnson's McNeil unit was liable for the severe skin burns and eye damage suffered by the girl, Brianna Maya.

According to the news source, Maya, who is now 13 years old, took the medication to treat a fever and cough when she was just three years old. As a result, however, she is now blind in one eye and suffered burns across 84 percent of her body.

An attorney for the family said that the ruling indicates the jury's belief that the drugmaker did not sufficiently warn patients about the risks of taking the medicine, the news source reports.

The lawsuit is not the first case to be brought against Motrin, as at least two other trials have taken place linking the medicine to Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, which is an allergic reaction often characterized by severely burned skin and damage to one's eyes, according to the news source.

In one case, a federal jury in Illinois awarded a woman $3.5 million after she allegedly suffered similar injuries when taking Children's Motrin. However, that award was later thrown out by a judge, the news source said.

Such cases are strikingly similar to that of the association between the drug Ketek and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. Ketek, which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2004, is used to treat specific forms of pneumonia caused by bacteria, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

However, it was later discovered that pre-clinical trials of the medication included fabricated patient enrollments, which meant the FDA had given the drug "blind approval." The medication was later associated with liver problems and received a black box warning.

In addition, a Canadian woman was diagnosed with a more severe stage of Stevens-Johnson Syndrome in 2007 after she allegedly took Ketek. Despite these accusations, however, Sanofi-Aventis Canada, which manufactures the antibiotic, reportedly did not update its label to reflect a warning about the development of Stevens-Johnson Syndrome.

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