After eight years of legal battles by the world’s largest drug maker, Pfizer and Wyeth, which was acquired by Pfizer in 2009, a Prempro settlement has been reached. This settlement also comes as a Chief Executive Officer, Ian Read, took over the drug maker.
Pfizer, Inc. has reportedly agreed to settle Prempro lawsuits filed on behalf of approximately 2,200 people who allegedly developed breast cancer after taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT), developed by the drug maker’s Wyeth’s subsidiary.
As reported in Bloomberg Businessweek, Pfizer has agreed to pay $330 million to resolve the claims, which comes out to approximately $150,000 for each case. However, the drug maker has indicated that some of the reported settlement terms are not accurate, but remains quiet about the specifics.
Many Prempro trials have resulted in multi-million dollar compensatory awards with even larger punitive damage awards after juries determined that Wyeth deliberately hid the risk of breast cancer from Prempro. This week, a Pennsylvania appeals court reinstated a $10 million verdict in a Prempro HRT lawsuit, which included $8.6 million in punitive damages.
Prempro contains a combination of the drugs Provera and Premarin, which artificially boost hormone levels in women undergoing menopause due to surgery or in post-menopausal women. Known as hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, these drugs are designed to provide relief from symptoms such as hot flashes, mood swings, and weight gain.
In 2002, the National Institute of Health released the results of studies that found women receiving HRT were at a higher risk of breast cancer, stroke and heart attacks. The studies, part of the Women’s Health Initiative, sparked most of the Prempro HRT lawsuits that are currently pending throughout the country. By that time, Prempro and other HRT drugs, had been used by more than 6 million women.
There are currently about 9,000 lawsuits due to breast cancer from Prempro pending against Pfizer’s Wyeth unit by women who claim they developed breast cancer from the medication. All of the lawsuits claim that the drug caused plaintiffs to develop breast cancer, and that Wyeth failed to warn patients and doctors of the potential side effects of the hormone replacement therapy. A number of those cases are consolidated and centralized under U.S. District Judge Billy Roy Wilson in Arkansas. Others are in state courts across the country, including Pennsylvania, Nevada and Minnesota.
For more information, contact one of our Gacovino Lake attorneys at 1-800-246-HURT (4878).