The Coalition against Bayer Dangers, a consumer watchdog group, has demanded a ban of “third generation’ contraceptive pills with increased rates of side effects. Studies recently published in the British Medical Journal found that pills which contain the hormones drospirenone or desogestrel carry twice the risk of potentially fatal injuries than the second generation medication first used in the 1970s. The studies showed that contraceptive pills such as Yaz and Yasmin, manufactured by Bayer, caused a six-fold increase in the risk of blood clots, which cause serious injuries such as Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and Pulmonary Embolism (PE). These pills may also cause gallbladder disease requiring surgical removal.
Bayer is the world market leader in hormonal contraceptives. Sales of Yaz and Yasmin were more than $1 billion last year. Jan Pehrke, who is from the Coalition against Bayer Dangers, says:
The side effects of Yaz and Yasmin are more dangerous than those of older oral contraceptives. Bayer concealed the risk of injury, failed to warn doctors or their patients and downplayed the risks of Yasmin and Yaz in comparison to other available birth control pills.
Both Yaz and Yasmin contain 3mg drospirenone, a hormone which promotes dehydration and leads to a slight weight loss. However, the loss of fluid also increases the risk of blood clots. German authorities reported seven deaths related to Yasmin. German and Swiss authorities recently started investigations into the risks of Yasmin.
In the United States at least 48 lawsuits have been filed against Bayer. It’s alleged in the suits that from 2004 through 2008 Yaz/Yasmin has caused more than 50 deaths. Some of the deaths occurred in women as young as 17. Deaths associated with cardiac arrhythmia, cardiac arrest, intracardiac thrombus, pulmonary embolism, and stroke have been reported. Bayer has refused to release any figures on side effects linked to contraceptives. Apparently, its reluctance is so as “not to make its customers uneasy.” Hubert Ostendorf from the Coalition against Bayer Dangers, had this to say:
Bayer is trying to establish hormone products as a standard contraceptive throughout the world, because their profits are enormous. That’s why the severe side effects are pushed into the background.
The Coalition has demanded that all studies and all reported side effects be published. Yaz/Yasmin is heavily advertised by Bayer, especially towards girls and young women, by promising reduction of weight and acne relief. In a television ad, for instance, Bayer claimed that Yaz “can help keep your skin clear,” despite the fact that clinical studies have not concluded that taking Yaz results in acne-free skin.
Yaz advertisements in the United States also claimed that it would treat the symptoms of premenstrual dysphoric disorder. In October of 2008, Bayer was cited by the FDA for deceptive claims. The ads, according to the FDA, were overstating the benefits of Yaz while distracting viewers from the risks. Bayer had to conduct a $20 million corrective advertising campaign. California Attorney General Edmund Brown stated:
Bayer’s deceptive ad campaign led young women to believe that its oral contraceptive would cure symptoms for which it was not approved for use.
Our firm has been investigating claims involving Yaz and Yasmin and will continue to do so. If you have questions about this matter, contact Frank Woodson in our firm at 800-898-2034 or by email at Frank.Woodson@beasleyallen.com.
Source: Coalition against Bayer Dangers
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.