Risperdal Side Effects
The attorneys at Bernstein Liebhard LLP are investigating potential Risperdal side effects on behalf of boys and men who allege they developed gynecomastia—male breasts—due to their Risperdal treatment. Risperdal is an atypical antipsychotic medication used to relieve the symptoms of a number of psychiatric disorders.
Risperdal lawsuits have been filed nationwide and allege that Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. unit neglected to provide sufficient warnings about Risperdal side effects and neglected to fully study the drug’s risks, including gynecomastia.
How Is Risperdal Tied To Gynecomastia?
One of the more serious Risperdal side effects is gynecomastia, the development of breasts in men and boys. Studies have found that Risperdal may increase levels of the hormone, prolactin. Prolactin is the hormone responsible for breast development in girls and for milk production in mothers. Boys and men who have taken Risperdal often test positive for increased prolactin levels and may develop Risperdal side effects including gynecomastia, which may also lead to breast pain and swelling and nipple discharge.
One study published in a 2006 issue of the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology indicated that risperidone—the active ingredient in Risperdal— can increase prolactin levels when it is administered to adolescent patients at dosages commonly used to treat psychotic symptoms. The clinical consequences of increased prolactin levels can include gynecomastia, according to the authors of the report. They warned that because long-term Risperdal side effects are not well studied concerning growth and puberty delays, caution should be exercised when prescribing the antipsychotic to children and teens.
Mounting Risperdal Side Effect Lawsuits, Settlements
Of the mounting Risperdal side effect lawsuits pending nationwide against Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen unit, many claimed that Risperdal led to gynecomastia in teenage boys. In fact one plaintiff alleged he developed male breasts due to his Risperdal use from when he was nine to 14 years of age. The young man further alleged that he was psychologically traumatized due to this Risperdal side effect, as well as the surgery he endured to remove the excessive breast tissue. The day that Risperdal lawsuit trial was to begin in September 2012, Johnson & Johnson reportedly agreed to a confidential settlement of the case.
Boys and men who suffer from gynecomastia due to their Risperdal use can also suffer from other, related Risperdal side effects, including significant psychological trauma. Because of this, doctors will often recommend surgery to remove the unwanted breasts when they develop in teenage boys. Although milder cases are often treated with liposuction, moderate and severe cases generally require full, double mastectomy, an extensive and painful procedure.
Considering a Risperdal Side Effect Lawsuit?
If you or someone you care about experienced Risperdal gynecomastia, it is important that legal advice be sought as soon as possible. Risperdal side effect lawsuits are mounting in courts across the country and, while Johnson & Johnson has not admitted any wrong doing, the drug maker has settled some cases involving gynecomastia before they reached trial. To learn more about the process for filing a Risperdal side effect lawsuit, please contact Bernstein Liebhard LLP at 1-855-511-1001.