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Paul Kiesel
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Pharmaceutical Giant Agrees to Pay 500 million to settle Zyprexa Claims

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Lilly settles thousands of Zyprexa claims. Lilly to pay $500 million settlement to over 28,000 injured victims.

International drug giant Eli Lilly agreed this week to pay 500 million to resolve 18,000 claims by those injured by the use of Zyprexa. Lilly’s Zyprexa is prescribed for serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The drug has been approved by the FDA since 1996 and since then has become Lilly’s largest selling drug, earning the company over $4.2 billion last year.

Zyprexa contains a powerful chemical, olanzapine, which binds to receptors in the brain to reduce psychotic hallucinations and delusions. Since its introduction to the market, there has been a growing concern that the use of Zyprexa greatly increases a patient’s risk of developing diabetes and high cholesterol.

Internal Lilly documents, obtained by plaintiffs’ lawyers, show that in clinical trials 16 percent of people taking Zyprexa gained more than 66 pounds in one year. In disregard of its own studies, Lilly failed to disclose to doctors that its drug could cause serious weight gain in some patients. Other internal documents reveal that Lilly pushed the drug for uses other than those specifically approved by the FDA. Although doctors may prescribe drugs in any manner they see fit, the law prohibits drug manufacturers from promoting their drugs for any purposes other than those specifically allowed by the FDA.

The current Lilly settlement covers approximately 28,500 individuals. There are at least 1,200 additional pending cases not a part of this week’s settlement agreement.

Kiesel Boucher Larson has handled many defective pharmaceutical and medical device cases. The firm is committed to working to insure that victims of defective products receive fair compensation for their injuries.