Lawsuits Against Bayer for Defective Birth Control Pill in the Hundreds


According to their most recent annual report, the best-selling pharmaceuticals for Bayer have been the birth control pills Yaz and Yasmin. Total sales totaled nearly $2 billion in 2008. However, hundreds of suits filed against the drug manufacturer over dangerous side effects seem to be threatening any good publicity the company might spin.

As of October 8, Bayer has been served with 129 lawsuits related to Yaz and Yasmin. Also being sued is the distributor of the drugs San Francisco-based McKesson Corp. Plaintiff lawyers believe these first suits are just the beginning of a flood since so many women are taking and have taken Yaz and Yasmin. Some attorneys are waiting for further studies before they file suit against the companies, but it is believed there could eventually be thousands of plaintiffs.

One woman and her husband who are suing Bayer say she was only on the birth control pill for one month before having a debilitating stroke. They are arguing that Bayer used aggressive promotion and misled customers about the risks associated with a synthetic form of the hormone progestin called drospirenone that Yaz and Yasmin both have. Bayer HealthCare has stated they stand behind the safety of the synthetic and that any side effects are listed on the label already.

The woman’s attorney said, “There are no benefits to this drug, and there are greater risks.” He says the only reason Bayer is using a synthetic hormone is because they can patent it. Defective drugs like Yaz and Yasmin seem to be pushed through, or kept on the market regardless of the danger, for profit.