While studies have shown that children and young men who take the antipsychotic drug Risperdal may development enlarged breasts, a new study indicates that middle-aged and older men may also develop abnormal breasts when using the prescription.
The study, published in the October issue of the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology, found that men between the ages of 45 and 80 who used Risperdal had a 69 percent higher risk of developing gynecomastia than men who did not use the antipsychotic. Researchers also found that Risperdal users were 40 percent more likely to develop gynecomastia than those who used alternate antipsychotics like Seroquel. In 2006, the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology published a study indicating Risperdal could cause gynecomastia in adolescents when prescribed to children and teens.
Hundreds of Risperdal Lawsuits Filed Across the Country
More than 700 lawsuits have been filed against Johnson & Johnson alleging the company failed to adequately warn physicians and patients about the serious side effects of Risperdal, including the development of gynecomastia. Many of these lawsuits were filed in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, and the court will begin the first of three bellwether trials on November 3, 2014. The second bellwether trial is slated to begin January 3, 2015, and the third is tentatively scheduled to begin February. These bellwether trials will allows all parties to present testimony and evidence to a jury, and assess how the cases could go in future trials.
More Risperdal lawsuits have been consolidated in New Jersey in multi-county litigation under Judge Jessica R. Mayer, and state and federal cases continue to be filed across the country, as more men become aware of side effects.
Study Authors Advise Physicians to Prescribe Risperdal Alternatives
Speaking on the risk of developing gynecomastia by Risperdal users, lead study author Mahyar Etminan, PharmD, told Medscape that the study was the “first and largest epidemiologic study on this question using data from 1 million men in the United States.” Medscape had discussed the study in March but the study had to undergo peer review prior to being published.
While researchers said statistically gynecomastia is still relatively uncommon, they said that if the efficacy is the same for other antipsychotics, then physicians should consider prescribing an alternative to Risperdal to reduce the risk of gynecomastia, especially when the psychological effects of even the most cases of breast development in males can be particularly difficult.
If you have experienced the development of gynecomastia after taking Risperdal, Bernstein Liebhard LLP offers free and fully confidential case evaluations. If you suffer from male breast development and have taken Risperdal, and have had to undergo liposuction or mastectomy to remove the excess breast tissue, call our experienced Risperdal attorney and learn about the legal options that may be available to you. Call us now at 855-511-1001 and let us assist you in obtaining compensation for the pain, suffering, and medical expenses associated with gynecomastia.