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Mother wondered if Zyprexa side effect helped kill son

At first the psychiatric drug Zyprexa may have saved a man's life who suffered psychotic episodes and hallucinations. The drug Zyprexa also contributed to his obesity and may have caused heart disease. After taking Zyprexa for 5 years, he gained 80 pounds. Weight gain is a common side effect of Zyprexa that has been played down by the manufacturer Eli Lily. Other severe side effects include diabetes and heart disease. The patient suffered from bipolar disorder affected by depression and mania that causes hallucinations and delusions. Eli Lilly found that compared with an older antipsychotic drug, Haldol, patients taking Zyprexa would be significantly more likely to develop heart disease, based on the results of a clinical trial comparing the two drugs. Exactly how many people have died as a result of Zyprexa's side effects, and whether Lilly adequately disclosed those risks, are central issues in the thousands of product-liability lawsuits pending against the company, and in state and federal investigations. Last year, Lilly paid $700 million to settle 8,000 lawsuits from people who said they had developed diabetes or other diseases after taking Zyprexa. Thousands more suits are still pending. (NY TIMES)

Strattera presents a new problem for Eli Lilly

Lilly warned, 12/2005, that Strattera can be dangerous to patient with jaundice or who show any signs of liver problems. See: Monheit Law for the latest Strattera Lawsuit information.

Eli Lilly entered in an agreement in principle to settle a majority of claims for Zyprexa

This settlement in interesting in light of data released in 2005 that five schizophrenia drugs were compared and new treatments such as Zyprexa are no better than older generic treatments. But the new treatments do cost more and make more money for big pharma!

The study showed how doctors can save money for their patients and still deliver good care. It is steps like this that can help reduce our national cost of health care.


A diabetes medicine poised to win Food and Drug Administration approval sharply increases the risk of heart problems, strokes and death, researchers reported in an analysis that raises pointed questions about the agency's handling of drug safety issues. The drug, Pargluva, the first in what had been considered a promising new class of diabetes drugs, more than doubles the risk for life-threatening cardiovascular complications, the researchers concluded after analyzing the studies the drug's maker, Bristol-Myers Squibb, presented in its application for approval. Based on the findings, the researchers urged the FDA to withhold approval until additional research can be conducted on the safety questions. The Washington Post, 10/21/2005

Side Effects: Schizophrenia treatments still far from ideal

In the 1990s, a new class of antipsychotics was introduced with great expectations. Such medications as Clozaril and Zyprexa seemed less likely to cause troublesome side effects. These "atypical antipsychotics" were followed by other new-generation schizophrenia medications, such as Risperdal, Seroquel and Geodon.

Although very expensive, often costing hundreds of dollars a month, these drugs rapidly replaced such older generic drugs as chlorpromazine or perphenazine. However, a new study demonstrates that the more recent drugs are not much of an advance.

Important Safety Information on Strattera (atomoxetine hydrochloride) and the potential for behavioral and emotional changes, including risk of self-harm

Eli Lilly Canada Inc., following discussions with Health Canada is advising Canadians that Strattera (atomoxetine hydrochloride) will now carry a new warning. This new warning indicates that patients of all ages taking Strattera may experience behavioural and/or emotional changes that put them at increased risk of self harm.

2005-09-30 « 

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