Yount, born in 1998, had been taking Risperdal in 2003 for treatment of a severe psychiatric problem. He began experiencing excessive breast growth by 2004.
The trial focused on arguments that Janssen withheld information showing a significant link between the drug and breast growth. Lawyers for the plaintiff used the Risperdal label and internal documents from Janssen to argue that the company took steps to limit the medical community's understanding of the risks associated with the medication.
In addition to awarding the $70 million, the jury also found unanimously, that Janssen "intentionally falsified, destroyed or concealed records."
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This case, A.Y. v. Janssen Pharmaceuticals, is the fifth to go to trial from Philadelphia's Risperdal-related mass tort program, and has resulted in the largest award out of that program.
Risperdal (Risperidone) is an atypical antipsychotic that works by changing the activity of certain natural substances in the brain. Developed by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, Risperdal was approved by the FDA in 1993 for the treatment of schizophrenia in adults. Risperdal side effects include Risperdal gynecomastia (male breast growth), tardive dyskinesia, high blood sugar and diabetes, stroke, heart attack and even death. As of September 2012 more than 420 Risperdal lawsuits had been filed, 130 of which are Risperdal gynecomastia claims.