Attention Vermont Celexa or Lexapro Consumers!
If either you or your child took Celexa or Lexapro any time between 1998 and the present, and were under the age of 18 at the time, and you paid any money, including a co-pay, for the prescriptions of Celexa or Lexapro, you may have a claim against the manufacturer, Forest Labs.
Forest Labs, the manufacturer of the antidepressants, Celexa and Lexapro, paid the government a settlement in 2010 because it illegally promoted Celexa for use in children and adolescents despite the fact it had not been approved for marketing in the United States. The Justice Department sued Forest Labs because it is illegal for a pharmaceutical company to promote a drug through “off-label marketing,” which means for uses that have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Forest Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Forest Labs, also was penalized for only publicizing positive Celexa study results in adolescents to doctors, while choosing to withhold the negative results. The company pled guilty to several crimes, including misbranding Celexa by marketing the antidepressant drug for use in children from 1998 to 2002, and paying kickbacks to doctors to encourage them to prescribe the drugs.
Our law firm is looking for a class representative to help in a similar consumer fraud class action against Forest Labs and Forest Pharmaceuticals where they allegedly promoted Celexa and Lexapro’s use by minors despite its lack of efficacy for them.
Baum Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, and Pendley Baudin & Coffin have filed a consumer fraud class action lawsuit alleging that drug manufacturer, Forest, deliberately and falsely misled consumers regarding the effectiveness of the company’s antidepressants, Celexa and Lexapro.The lawsuit alleges that the clinical trials that examined whether the antidepressants, Celexa and Lexapro, are effective at treating pediatric major depressive disorder (“MDD”) indicate that Celexa and Lexapro are no more effective clinically than a sugar pill. The clinical trials show that any perceived benefit pediatric patients receive from taking Celexa or Lexapro in treating their depression is primarily explained by the placebo effect – the perceived efficacy of a drug based upon one’s belief that the drug works.
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The Placebo Effect
Drug makers are required to test drugs for efficacy and safety and submit the results to the FDA before the drug is approved. During these clinical trials, up to hundreds of patients are given either the drug being tested or a placebo (a sugar pill that has no medicinal benefit). Neither the patients nor the researchers testing the drug are supposed to be aware of which patients are receiving the actual medication.
In trials of antidepressants, patients are interviewed about their symptoms (usually using the 17-question Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression, or “HAM-D”) before, during, and at the end of the trial period, which usually lasts six to eight weeks, to determine how much their symptoms have diminished. Their answers are assigned a numerical value and summed to give an overall HAM-D depression score. The higher the score, the worse the depression.
However, many people experience significant symptom relief simply as a result of a belief that they are taking an active medication, even when the pill they are taking is a placebo. This is known as the placebo effect and it can be very powerful – so powerful in fact that, in many trials, those taking the sugar pill achieve as much symptom relief, according to HAM-D scores, as those taking the drug. Unless a drug company can provide to the FDA at least two clinical trials in which the patients receiving the drug achieve significantly more symptom improvement as measured by the HAM-D than those taking a placebo, the agency will not approve the drug.
If your child took Celexa or Lexapro between 1998 and the present, was under the age of 18 at the time he/she took it, and you paid for the prescriptions, including a co-pay, of Celexa or Lexapro for your child, you may qualify to be the next class representative in a class action in your state.
In a Celexa/Lexapro consumer fraud class action, the parent of a child who took either drug while a minor, can represent the entire population of parents whose children took either drug between 1998 and the present, in a class action lawsuit against Forest.
If you are interested in becoming a class representative for a class action against Forest Labs and Forest Pharmaceuticals, please contact our law firm at 800-827-0087 or via our online form.
Read the class action complaint against Forest Labs which alleges the company illegally marketed Celexa and Lexapro for off-label use in pediatric patients when both drugs had been approved only for adult use. According to the lawsuit, Forest Labs allegedly disseminated and caused others to disseminate false and misleading information to doctors and the public about the safety and efficacy of Celexa and Lexapro in treating pediatric patients.
Similar Class Actions
National Pediatric Paxil Class Action Settlement – The maker of Paxil settled for $63.8 million in a national pediatric Paxil class settlement which provided more payment to people who paid for Paxil for use by a minor.