Lipitor Class Action Lawsuit

Lipitor (atorvastatin) is a popular drug taken by millions of men and women to help reduce bad cholesterol, lowering the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Unfortunately, prolonged use of the drug has been linked to an increase in serum glucose levels in the blood. In February 2012, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it would be amending the labels on drugs in the statin class, of which Lipitor is a member, to include a warning that use of these medications might put some patients at a greater risk for developing type 2 Diabetes.

Will Lipitor Be Recalled?

Pfizer, the manufacturer of Lipitor, has no plans to recall its most popular and profitable drug. Lipitor, in its name brand and generic forms, is the world’s most popular prescription drug, with sales topping more than $130 billion. More than 20 million Americans currently use Lipitor, but many have developed type 2 Diabetes from long-term use of the medication.

Lipitor Class Action Lawsuits

Patients who have been injured by Lipitor are exploring their legal options with personal injury lawyers. Generally, class action lawsuits are not advisable when it comes to seeking compensation for bodily harms suffered from a dangerous prescription drug or faulty medical device. Individual lawsuits are the preferred path for plaintiffs who have been injured by a medical product they thought would be helping, rather than hurting them.

Lipitor Lawsuits Have Recently Been Consolidated

In June 2013, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) approved the formation of a Lipitor multidistrict litigation (MDL) that will consolidate all lawsuits pending in federal courts across the country. The lawsuits will be transferred from the federal courts they were originally filed in, to the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina. The pending lawsuits claim that Pfizer knew of the increased risk of type 2 Diabetes in patients who take Lipitor, but chose not to disclose the information to patients and their physicians.

Consolidation of these lawsuits into an MDL will speed up pretrial proceedings, and reduce litigation costs. The cases are overseen by a single judge, but will maintain their individuality as they progress towards trial or settlement. The difference between an MDL and a class action is that plaintiffs, if successful, will be awarded compensation based on their individual circumstances. If a class action is successful, the group of plaintiffs must share an equal portion of a cash award.

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