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Abilify, a drug used to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, is the subject of a mass tort suit claiming it leads to destructive behaviors. The drug was brought into the U.S. market by Otsuka America and Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2002. Prior to any warnings in the U.S., European and Canadian warning labels stated that Abilify could unleash “destructive behaviors.” On May 3, 2016, the FDA required an addition to Abilify’s labels warning of “compulsive or uncontrollable urges to gamble, binge eat, shop, and have sex.” Complaints allege failure to warn and failure to adequately test the drug.
The most common types of compulsive behavior associated with taking Abilify include the following:

Class action plaintiffs who reported these compulsive behaviors while taking Abilify indicated that they had never experienced similar urges or compulsions in the past (i.e. prior to taking Abilify), and that the urges were powerful and uncontrollable.

They also reported that immediately after they stopped taking Abilify, the compulsive urges went away completely.

Failure to Warn

Drug companies have an obligation under federal law to inform the public about any harmful side effects of drugs they create and market. But in this case, the warnings were non-existent until many patients had already been affected by the harmful side effects of Abilify.

Bristol-Myers Squibb has had to deal with lawsuits related to Abilify in the past. The company paid $515 million to settle federal charges accusing it of illegally marketing its popular drug to nursing homes in 2007, despite the fact that the drug may cause death in seniors with dementia. Abilify was never approved by the Food and Drug Administration for treatment of dementia.

Abilify Lawyers will have to use the discovery process to determine what the executives and scientists at Bristol-Myers Squibb knew about the potential risks of Abilify. Internal reports and memoranda can be useful in proving that a company knew about certain dangers but chose not to warn the consumers of the product.